Iveco has announced it will be increasing local truck production in Dandenong. The company sold the Stralis ATi in Australia as, a fully imported model. However, from the first quarter of 2018 the Stralis ATi has begun local assembly, changing its model name to ‘AT’, as the ‘i’ signified its previous import status.
Selected components including mirrors, wheel angles, trailer connections, batteries, wheels and liquids are now all being sourced locally. The addition of a second Stralis model to the local manufacturing mix provides economies of scale, increased commonality of parts and a strong business case to further increase the scope of local manufacturing works.
The addition of the Stralis AT to the local production mix has also seen the Dandenong facility undergo investment in tooling and software to calibrate the AT’s adaptive cruise control and lane departure warning systems, and in doing so introduced new technology to the site that could also be used for other models in the future.
Local production of AT models should lead to reduced lead times from vehicle order to delivery, and the ability to customise to order by adding factory-fitted special options and local accessories.
Iveco’s local engineers are also involved in the installation of new Euro 6-rated Cursor engines for both the AT and AS-L variants. The team is continuing its real market testing on a selection of these engines. A number of vehicles have been clocking up validation, compliance and general testing kilometres in real-world fleet conditions prior to their introduction to the production line.
During the evaluation phase, the vehicles will cover a minimum of 300,000 km each, with performance data being downloaded and analysed on a weekly basis. The trucks’ fluids are also being sampled every 25,000 kilometres.
“IVECO is one of few truck brands that continue to manufacture here, this latest expansion in Australian-based production demonstrates the company’s commitment to having a strong local manufacturing presence,” said Darren Swenson, Iveco Australia Marketing Manager. “The addition of Stralis AT variants to the local production mix along with the validation of new power plants and other initiatives is great news for the local workforce and our third party parts suppliers but also for Australian truck buyers who can further reap the benefits that locally-manufactured vehicles provide.
“The expansion of local production not only reflects a strong belief from IVECO Australia that local manufacturing is sustainable, but the initiative is also strongly supported by IVECO’s parent company, CNH Industrial.”
The Stralis AT and AS-L ranges join several other of Iveco’s locally-manufactured models including the Acco, which has been built in Dandenong for over 40 years, and Delta and Metro bus chassis.