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First-Ever Cat® On-Road Trucks Launched

Cat® CT610 and Cat® CT630 Engineered to Meet Australia’s Exacting Requirements Uluru, Northern Territory, Australia – 20 November 2010 –The first-ever Cat® on-highway trucks received an enthusiastic response from the more than 300 people in attendance at a launch event in Uluru, Northern Territory, Australia.

The new products – the Cat® CT610 and Cat® CT630 – were developed by NC2, the joint venture between Navistar and Caterpillar. The trucks are being assembled in Tullamarine, Victoria and will be sold through a newly formed Australian network composed of select Cat® dealers.

“These groundbreaking new on-highway Cat® trucks demonstrate the unique value proposition that NC2 is delivering to the global truck marketplace,” said Al Saltiel, president of NC2. “We are proud to be bringing these new trucks to Australia, leveraging the potent combination of Navistar’s truck manufacturing expertise and Caterpillar’s powerful global network.”

“The launch of these trucks opens a new chapter in the history of Cat® products,” said George Taylor, General Manager of Caterpillar’s Global On-Highway Division. “For the first time ever, the power of the Cat® brand is being delivered in on-highway vehicles.”

Jeff Tyzack, General Manager, Sales and Marketing for NC2 Australia, provided an overview of the two new products, which are both conventional prime movers and are available in day-cab and extended-cab options:

  • The Cat® CT610 is powered by the 470-hp Cat® C13 engine. With a bumper to back-of-cab (BBC) measurement of 2.72 metres, it is targeted to 19-metre applications and has a capacity of up to 57 tonnes.
  • The Cat® CT630 is powered by the 550-hp Cat® C15 engine. With a BBC measurement of 3.10 metres, it is suitable for B-double on-highway roadtrain applications and is available in both 72-tonne and 90-tonne options.
“The Cat® CT610 and Cat® CT630 vehicles are designed to address Australian customers’ requirements in a number of important ways,” Tyzack continued. “These products are powered by Cat® engines, which have a legendary reputation for reliability, durability and fuel economy. The trucks offer best-in-class fuel economy, unparalleled driver satisfaction, unprecedented uptime and will deliver low cost of ownership. And they are backed by an unsurpassed dealer capability that provides a one-stop solution for Australian truck operators.”

Tom Baughman, Vice President of Product Development, confirmed the extensive product development effort that went into the Cat® CT610 and Cat® CT630.

“We conducted extensive performance evaluations and competitive benchmarking to develop a product that uniquely addresses customers’ demands for improved fuel efficiency, performance and driver accommodation,” Baughman said.

Best-in-Class Fuel Economy

First of all, Baughman said, the Cat® CT610 and Cat® CT630 have been designed to address growing marketplace demands for improved fuel efficiency.

Styled with sculpted fenders, a boldly sloped hood, sleek rooflines and streamlined cab-side shaping, the two vehicles share an aerodynamic shape that reduces wind resistance and provides an added dimension of fuel economy performance.

Key test applications used to achieve the design were Computational Fluid Dynamics, a computerized application used to optimize design in the early stages of the process; 1/8 scale wind tunnel testing for basic shape development; and full-scale wind tunnel testing.

Unparalleled Driver Satisfaction

Baughman also pointed out that the Cat® CT610 and Cat® CT630 have been designed to provide an unprecedented level of driver satisfaction.

“These are vehicles that owners are proud to own and drivers are proud to drive,” Baughman said. “Owners will love the way the vehicles save money and generate profits, and drivers will love the drivability and comfort we’ve packed inside.”

In particular, Baughman said, drivers will benefit from advanced, integrated ride and handling that is designed to reduce fatigue and improve responsiveness. The seat, the cab and chassis suspensions have been integrated and tested to complement and enhance vehicle level ride and handling characteristics.

From the quietness of the air-conditioned cab, the drivers are positioned comfortably as they take in the excellent view of the road. In-depth ergonomic research, including detailed measurement of hundreds of truck drivers, was used to design the cab with maximum comfort, safety and productivity.

From the available seat travel, to flexible positioning of the steering wheel, instrument panel gauges and steering wheel-based controls, the Cat® CT610 and Cat® CT630 accommodate the full range of driver sizes and reduce “cognitive demand” on drivers, so they can focus on the road.

Also, drivers will feel at home in the cab with improved fit-and-finish, generous storage space, excellent heating and air-conditioning performance, and a roomy feel with more natural light.

“The integrity and durability of these new Cat® on-highway vehicles delivers a smoother, quieter ride, minimizing driver fatigue and maximizing productivity,” Baughman said. “The objective is for the driver to feel confident, comfortable and secure.”

Unprecedented Uptime

Productivity goes beyond the driver; it also requires a reliable tractor. The goal of best-in-class reliability drove every design and process improvement.

“Our engineers spent a lot of time with customers mining their maintenance records and discussing the top causes of downtime,” Baughman said. “Every targeted system improvement has been tracked on an ongoing basis, from component testing through to vehicle testing. The goal is to ensure we provide customers a product that stands up to the grueling and time-sensitive demands synonymous with line haul applications.”

One critical factor in the Australian market is durability. Tyzack, who has personally driven both the Cat® CT610 and Cat® CT630 in both single trailer and B-Double configurations, confirmed that the vehicles have been designed for the performance characteristics required in the Australian market.

“We’ve chosen a chassis package to support the higher loads, in accordance with the Australian market’s demands,” Tyzack said. “We’ve added stronger cross members, thicker frame rails, higher capacity axles and suspensions, better routing and clipping of all hoses and wires in the chassis, and stronger suspension and cab supports.”

Tyzack also noted the front axle of the CT610, by Meritor, is rated at 6.5 tonne and is mounted on parabolic springs and a proven Arvin Meritor RT-46-160 rear axle is rated at 20.9 tonne. The rear axle set utilises road friendly Hendrikson HAS-460 suspension, and is likewise rated at 20.9 tonne.

“The engineers have chosen a product platform base which has a history of durability and reliability in comparable markets like South America, where the roads are rough, the loads are heavy and the temperatures are high. These choices will surely be beneficial to Australian operators,” Tyzack said.

Lowest Cost of Ownership

Designed with minimal special tools and ease of access for technicians, the Cat® CT610 and Cat® CT630 will be in and out of the shop in record time. In total, more than 60 efficient repair and maintenance features have been incorporated. For example, transmission replacement time has been reduced by 90 minutes, while headlight bulbs and windshield wiper blades can be replaced by a driver or mechanic without tools.

Ergonomic design was incorporated into the cab to enhance the driver environment, innovations like a low-effort easy tilt hood. Our engineers have also synchronized service intervals so that customers gain an average of 59 more days on the road.

Unsurpassed Dealer Capability

Supporting the new Cat® vehicles is an unsurpassed dealer network that spans Australia with more than 50 sales and service locations.

“We’ve put together a very strong Australian dealer network,” said Bill Fulton, Executive Director of Dealer Operations. “Each dealer has a clear commitment to the on-highway market, and an extensive history of servicing the Cat® engine. They offer a total truck servicing plan that provides a one-stop solution for truck operators.”

The Caterpillar Australia Dealer Network offers comprehensive, one-stop service and support. The network’s dedicated and certified truck technicians have all the right tools for the job, including access to all makes of required parts. Cat Logistics provides all dealers with real-time freight and logistics solutions for Cat parts and trucking equipment for after-sales support. Cat Truck Roadside Assist offers comprehensive 24/7 support at a dedicated toll-free number, 1800 228 007. And Cat Finance provides competitive packaged finance solutions to ensure Cat customers are looked after and have the peace of mind that comes from knowing they have the support of a truly global finance company.

“This dealer network offers a consistency of service and support that cannot be replicated by the independent operators utilized by most truck brands,” Fulton said.

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