And the Awards for Commercial Trucks of the Year Goes To...by Jana Ritter - Published: 1/27/2014
While the music industry celebrated the Grammys this weekend, the trucking industry held one its own awards ceremony during its annual convention with the National Automobile Dealers Association in New Orleans. Navistar International won both categories in the American Truck Dealers’ 2014 Commercial Truck of the Year competition with its ProStar heavy-duty and TerraStar medium-duty models.
Trucks were judged by a panel of judges who drove each truck in the same conditions and the same place and considered each truck on its own merits rather than rating one truck against another. The Truck of the Year is picked based on a number of criteria including innovation and design, safety and driver and owner satisfaction. This year’s competitors were Kenworth’s T880 vocational truck with a Paccar MX-13 engine and Peterbilt’s Model 579 tractor, also with an MX. The medium-duty nominees were Hino’s 195h Double Cab hybrid, Kenworth’s K270 low-cabover and Peterbilt’s Model 220 low cabover.
ATD Convention Chairman Steve Parker announced the winners and said the judges were impressed with the maneuverability, easy shifting and performance of the Navistar big-bore engine.
“It is an honor to be recognized this year with both the 2014 ATD Heavy-Duty and Medium-Duty Commercial Truck of the Year titles,” said Bill Kozek, president of North America Truck and Parts for Navistar. “Being recognized in both these categories proves International is back with great product offerings.”
The International ProStar daycab tractor was re-introduced in December 2012 with the ISX15 engine offering ratings up to 550 horsepower and 1850 lb.-ft. of torque. Navistar promotes the ProStar as a “driver’s truck” with features such as a one-piece, aerodynamic wraparound windshield, sloped hood and lower placed instrument panel to give drivers a good view of the road. “The ProStar also carries a number of features like a 4-point, air-over-strut cab suspension, a combination of on-and-off center steering, a wide-track front axle and auto-like steering for superior ride and handling,” Navistar adds.
The judges said the TerraStar crewcab model is powered by the 300 horsepower, 660 lb.-ft. torque 6.4 liter MaxxForce 7 engine and pulls a heavy trailer well. The truck also has a tilt hood for easy access to the engine, a spacious interior and is fun to drive, according to the judges.