Caterpillar Inc. says it will unveil its first vocational truck, the CT660, at Conexpo-Con/Agg in Las Vegas in March 2011. The result of a manufacturing agreement with Navistar International, the CT660 is based on International’s PayStar 5000i series and will use Navistar diesels and offer Cat’s own automatic transmission.
The Class 8 trucks will be sold and serviced exclusively through Cat’s North American dealer network, with production beginning after Conexpo for delivery later in the year. International dealers will not sell or service the CT660, Cat and Navistar executives had previously said.
Conventional-cab CT (for Cat Truck) 660s will be custom built for a variety of on/off-road applications. Cat planners asked vocational truck owners and drivers what they wanted and needed from their trucks before design work began.
“Our design and manufacturing has been focused squarely on making the customer input we gathered a reality,” said George Taylor, director and general manager of Cat’s Global On-Highway Department.
“We coupled customer input with our knowledge learned from years of experience working closely with different industries to meet their heavy equipment needs to identify the ideal standard options for various industry applications,” he said. “As a result, we’re proud we will deliver a line of vocational trucks that our customers want, knowing they are built for a wide variety of jobs.”
Initial engine options will include a Cat CT11 with ratings from 330 to 390 hp, and a CT13 at 410 to 475 hp. Both are expected to be MaxxForce 10.5- and 12.4-liter diesels adapted for use in the Cat trucks.
In 2012, Cat will offer a CT15 with 435 to 550 hp. This 15-liter engine will be Cat’s version of Navistar’s upcoming MaxxForce 15, which uses a Cat C15 block and other “iron” components with Navistar fuel and air systems.
Cat’s CX31 torque converter-style automatic transmission will be an option. Already used in Cat machinery, the CX31 will have three locations for rear power take-off mountings. Caterpillar will also offer other vocational transmission options, including Eaton manual and automated-manual transmissions.
“These trucks are everything the Cat brand represents in terms of quality, durability, reliability, and driver ergonomics, so we’re looking forward to seeing the reaction to the CT660 at Conexpo,” said Cat’s vocational truck product manager, Gary Blood.
CT660 trucks will be supported by Cat dealers in their shops and in the field, said Tom Eberlin, product support manager. That includes the 24/7 Cat On-Highway Call Center and from Cat dealers.
Cat dealers have been gearing up to support the new trucks with bumper-to-bumper service, and they’ve been getting information on truck options and features from the factory so they are well prepared to consult with customers during the sales process, said Cat’s dealer development manager, Ed Cullen.
“We’re sure owners, as well as the drivers, will be thrilled when we share details about the features and benefits of the CT660 at our unveiling,” Cullen said. “And they'll be equally thrilled with our full Cat truck line over the coming years, because these are the trucks customers told us they wanted.”
The CT660’s unveiling is scheduled for March 22, 2011 at Conexpo in Las Vegas.