After the introduction of the first raft of Cat models back in 2011, a question hung in the air. Was there going to be ADR 80/03 compliant Cat Trucks on the market and when would they arrive? These questions have been answered with the unveiling of two new models at the show in Melbourne, both fitted with new engine designs compliant with the latest exhaust gas regulations.
The two new models on display at the show demonstrate how the Cat brand is maturing in the Australian market and starting to move away from simple basic models and finesse the range to meet the precise requirements of the Australian transport industry. The first two models launched, the CT 610 and the CT 630 were Cat adaptations of the truck models being built in the US by Navistar. These new models demonstrate much more Australian input into the initial design.
The Cat CT 630S is a new model adapted to suit the preferences of many in the trucking industry. It is a short bonneted conventional truck with a 15L engine offering power output options up to 550hp (410kW) and 2500Nm (1850 ft lb) of torque. By reengineering some of the cab and bonnet components, the company has managed to reduce the BBC dimension of the new truck down to a point where it can be used as a prime mover hauling a B-double in a 34 pallet combination.
The new model will be fitted with the revised C 15 engine, which uses a combination of the original ACERT technology and new dual horizontal diesel particulate filters to get the engine over the line to meet ADR 80/03 exhaust gas emissions regulations. By lifting the cab and adjusting the bonnet, the CT 630S comes in with a BBC of 3515mm for the sleeper cab and 2855mm for the day cab.
Cat also unveiled a new high-rise sleeper prime mover, the Cat CT 630LS, fitted with an integrated sleeper built on the production line in Garland, Texas. This model will use the new C 15 engine and meet the latest exhaust gas rules. In the past, large sleepers from Cat were aftermarket fitments. The cab meets the ECE R29 cab strength requirements and, fitting within a BBC dimension of 4267mm, has room for a 2040mm x 900mm mattress.
Also on show for the first time was the new Cat CT 13 engine which will be fitted to the new CT610 trucks as they come through for release. This engine will be branded as a Caterpillar and is based on the Navistar Maxxforce 13 engine, which itself is based on the MAN D26 engine sold here in Australia in the TGX models.
The message coming out of Cat Trucks at the ITTES is that the brand is here to stay. By introducing new models onto the market Cat Trucks is confirming its commitment to the long term as an Australian operation.
“We will not be able to do everything we want to at once,” said Cat Managing Director, Bill Fulton at the ITTES. “But we do have a lot of exciting plans for the Australian market in the next five years. What's most important for us is making sure the customer is happy with our product. The hardest part of our strategy is building a population of trucks and customers where we are the preferred brand and dealer network.”