General Motors has started to sell its T-Series trucks in 1998. The vehicles were based on the Isuzu’s F-Series medium duty range of trucks and shared the same design and technologies with their siblings.
The Chevrolet T-Series range consisted of three models namely the T6500, T7500 and T8500, all powered by a 7.8 liter Isuzu diesel engine. All Chevrolet T-Series trucks had a cab over engine configurations and were equipped with various Allison transmissions.
The Chevrolet T Series was sold until 2009 and came with GVM (gross vehicle mass) ratings between 24,350 lbs. to 39,000 lbs. and 4x4, 6x2 and 6x4 axle configurations.
The Hino brand is a part of the Toyota company and was launched in 2008. The brand has managed to build a pretty solid image in the trucking industry, thanks to its sturdy and reliable vehicles that share the same quality standards with Toyota’s cars.
At the moment the brand’s lineup consists of two trucks which cover a wide range of GVWs (gross vehicle weights) from class five to class seven models.
The conventional cab model is available as a class 6 and 7 truck with gross vehicle weights ranging from 23.000 to 33.000 lbs. The class 6 versions are equipped with a 220 hp engine, while the class 7 trucks come with 260 hp on tap.
In the world of trucking there are a few brands which are instantly put into the “not good” category and don’t even get the chance to prove themselves. Of course that everyone loves the well known and proven European models from DAF, Mercedes, MAN and so on, but what about the less known trucks? Are those trucks that bad to deserve to be treated with ignorance?
Let’s take a closer look at Tata’s Novus model, which is part of the heavy duty league and it’s the first Indian truck that passed the 300 hp barrier and went against the legendary European giants.
After has acquired the truck section from Daewoo, the first model launched by Tata was the Novus. The new truck is based on the Daewoo Novus model which is sold in South Korea.
The Tata Novus features a cab over engine configuration and is available in a wide range of version being able to suit various heavy duty applications. The truck is powered by a Cummins C8 engine which develops between 320 and 420 hp.
The BMC Professional is a highly versatile range of commercial vehicles designed for medium and heavy duty applications. The BMC Professional is available with both sleeper and day cabs and comes with a cab over engine configuration.
The truck has a payload of up to 50000 kg and it’s powered by a range of Cummins engines which develop a maximum output of 410 hp and 2000 Nm of torque. The BMC professional is also offered with a choice of 4x2 and 6x4 axle configurations which makes it eligible for a wide range of jobs.
Foden has started to build trucks back in 1856 but after a history of 150 years the production was halted.
A significant milestone in the company history was the year 1980 when it became a division of Paccar Inc and has started to build models with its new partner. The last truck built by Foden and Paccar was named the Alpha and it was a cabover engine model powered by Cummins engines. The truck was sold in UK and New Zeeland until July 2006 when the company retired from truck production.
The Foden Alpha had a pretty versatile nature and thanks to its flexible chassis and the wide range of axle configurations it was suited for various heavy duty applications.
At the moment, the company continues to supply spare parts and service for its old trucks throughout the UK.
In 2009 the old Tatra Terrno 1 benefitted from a small facelift, as it received improved aerodynamics and a host of technical upgrades.
The Terrno 1 features a cab over engine configuration and is offered with a choice of 4x4, 6x4, 6x6 and 8x8 drives. Due to its versatile character, the medium duty truck can be used for various applications on any terrains as its King Frame combined suspension (mechanical leaf or coil springs and high-pressure air bellows) gives it capable off road abilities.
The T 810 is a cab over engine medium duty truck with a highly versatile character. Thanks to its wide range of versions, the Tatra T810 can be used for various applications and makes duties even in war zones as a military vehicle. Tatra designers combined a ladder frame with rigid portal axles to offer the truck a very high ground clearance which gives it capable off road abilities.
The vehicle is offered with two wheelbase lengths and a three-point superstructure mounting system which is combined with gross vehicle weights of up to 27.5 tonnes. Thanks to its versatile nature and the generous payload capacity, the Tatra T 810 also offers the possibility to be equipped with special superstructures or various bodies.
For Tatra it was very hard to survive to the difficult economic conditions and had also need to face a very strong competition coming from its European drivers. Luckily, in 2011 DAF acquired 19% ownership in TATRA and now it also supplies engines and cabs for the Czech manufacturer.
Tatra’s main product is now sold globally under the name of Phoenix. The Tatra Phoenix is part of the heavy duty league and can carry massive loads on both regular roads or on harsh terrains.
The truck features a unique chassis design which requires no sub-frame for affixing tipper body. This translates into more payload capacity hence lower costs per km.
The Chinese manufacturers are starting to conquer more and more markets and their vehicles have finally begun to offer satisfactory performances and prove that these guys are fast learners. However, some faults regarding the build quality and reliability still remain, but some sacrifices had to be done to keep the price as cheap as possible.
The new generation of Heavy Duty trucks from JAC is a major improvement over the previous models, but while we appreciated the technical upgrade and the more comfortable cabin, we’ll have to criticize the exterior design. There isn’t anything inherently wrong with it, but it’s almost identical with Scania’s trucks and you won’t need to be an expert to spot the resemblance.
Not many of you heard about JAC, mostly because it’s a Chinese manufacturer which until recently didn’t managed to catch much attention. The company however, has recently made a joint venture with Navistar and started to use Cummins engines for its lineup of trucks.
At the moment, JAC is also in full expansion and plans to conquer new markets. Its lineup of vehicles includes light, medium and heavy duty models and all of them are fairly versatile.
The Heavy duty range of trucks is offered in tractor, mixer, dump and lorry configurations with gross vehicle weights ranging from 13000 kg to 50000 kg.
TheMercedes Benz Unimog is around for some time now, as it tackles the harshest working conditions since the Second World War. The Unimog is an iconic off roader which has built itself a very strong reputation being one of the most appreciated vehicles in its class.
The Unimog is the smaller brother of the Zetros and is offered in a wide range of versions with different engines and wheelbases. There are two Unimog families available the Unimog 300 - 500 and the Unimog 3000- 5000.
The Unimog 300, 400 and 500 range covers permissible gross vehicle weights from 7.5 t to 16 t, each model coming with a choice of two wheelbase lengths and two engine outputs.
The Unimog 300-500 are offered with a choice of four- and six-cylinder in-line engines from the OM 904 LA and OM 906 LA series.
CAT has a long history behind and the company is famous thanks o its strong engines and the heavy duty working vehicles that were designed to tackle the harshest construction sites without thinking twice. Recently, the company decided to try its luck in the transport industry and allied with Navistar to launch its first highway truck.
At the moment, the CAT CT630 is sold mainly on the Australian market and was developed especially for highway operations. Except for a few small differences, the truck shares the same design with the International ProStar, but is powered by a CAT C15 engine which develops 550hp. The CT630 also features a roomy cabin and an aerodynamic exterior design that was developed to enhance its fuel efficiency.
In US, CAT sells only its CT660 vocational model, but in Australia its lineup includes two models namely the CT 610 and CT 630. Both Australian models were developed by NC2, a joint venture between Navistar and Caterpillar and you won’t need to be an expert to see that between CAT’s trucks and International’s models there is a strong resemblance.
While the CT660 has a totally fresh design the 610 model is based on the International DuraStar and TranStar models. These vehicles don’t share only the exterior design, but also the same interior and technologies. However, the CT610 isn’t powered by Cummins engines, as at its hart sits a 470 hp CAT engine. The CT610 is as versatile as its International siblings and was developed especially for regional haul applications.
Avia isn’t as famous as other truck companies, but in fact it is among the oldest European manufacturer. Initially the company was founded in Czechoslovakia in 1919 and its main purpose was to build aircrafts. After a while, Avia has also started to build trucks. One of the most significant steps in Avia’s history was the year 1995 when it was purchased by the Koreans from Daewoo who developed the D Series models.
At the moment Avia is owned by Ashok Leyland, an Indian company which had a benefic impact for company’s trucks as it brought new technologies and facilities.
The Avia D Series includes three models namely the D75, D90 and D120 (4X4) with maximum GVW (gross vehicle weight) that can go to up to 11990 kg. All are medium duty trucks and were developed especially for urban commercial applications.
The trucks are powered by a range of Cummins ISBe4 engines which come in three power outputs developing 160, 185 hp and 207 hp.
Mercedes is planning to extend its trucks lineup with the addition of a new model. The fresh truck bears the name Antos and was specifically engineered for heavy duty short radius distribution applications.
The new vehicle has borrowed many technologies and design lines from the Actros which is its bigger brother, but it features a character of its own and a unique cab configuration that was designed specifically for short delivery purposes.
The Mercedes Antos will be offered with a choice of medium- and short-size cabs and will be available with a range of 13 engines that will meet the latest Euro VI emission requirements.
For the moment, Mercedes revealed only a few details about its new Antos, but the truck will make its global debut in Frankfurt at the Commercial Vehicle IAA in September, so stay posted for more information.
The Foton Auman is the biggest truck built by the Chinese manufacturer. The truck’s main advantages are that it uses Mercedes-Benz technology for its chassis and is powered by a range of Cummins engines.
While the Chinese trucks are still seen with doubtful eyes by the truckers from all over the world, the Foton Auman could prove to be of a different breed thanks to its American engines and the German technology used for the chassis.
The Auman is offered with a wide choice of wheel base lengths which range from 3400 to 6000mm and has a gross combination mass of up to 45 tonnes. In order to meet a wide range of operational needs, the Foton Auman is offered in various models including tractor, platform, dump and other.