International re-enters construction market with new Class 8 truck

  • 10-Feb-2016 12:43 EST
Hero_HX620_Dump.jpg

Offering the Cummins ISX15 engine, the HX620 is a 120-in BBC set-back axle truck or tractor primarily for heavy haul tractor, construction dump (pictured), and platform stake/crane applications. (Click arrow at top right of this image to view additional truck models.)

International Truck launched the International HX Series, a new line of Class 8 premium vocational trucks designed for the severe service industry, at the recent World of Concrete trade show in Las Vegas. The new truck series replaces the PayStar model and is the first all-new vehicle introduced by International since 2010.

The first trucks will be delivered this spring.

“The launch of the HX Series is an opportunity for International to recapture a leading position in the vocational market—a segment we previously led,” Troy Clarke, President and CEO, Navistar, Inc., said at the vehicle’s unveiling. “The launch of the HX Series underscores our commitment to innovation, our dedication to uptime, and our position as a leader within the industry.”

The truck was in development for 18 months, according to a company spokeswoman. Though International never completely exited the construction/concrete market, the last refresh of this product was in 1999, she noted.

“It’s been a few years since we were able to say that we had a product that could not only compete but win in the severe service market,” added Jeff Sass, Senior Vice President of North American Sales for Navistar, Inc. “This product line will now give International Truck the most comprehensive severe service lineup in the industry.”

Four HX Series models will be offered, with both set-forward and set-back front axle models in either short or long hood, depending on the application. Three models were unveiled at World of Concrete—the HX515, HX615, and HX620.

The HX515 is a 115-in BBC (bumper to back of cab) set-forward axle straight truck powered by the Navistar N13 13-L engine. Its primary vocations include concrete mixer, construction dump, refuse/roll-off, and crane. Also 115-in BBC and N13-powered, the HX615 is a set-back axle truck or tractor for construction dump, concrete mixer, platform stake/crane, and refuse/roll-off vocations. Offering the Cummins ISX15 engine, the HX620 is a 120-in BBC set-back axle truck or tractor primarily for heavy haul tractor, construction dump, and platform stake/crane applications.

The fourth model, the HX520, is a 120-in BBC set-forward axle truck or tractor powered by the 15-L Cummins engine. Primary vocations include heavy haul tractor, construction dump, and platform stake/crane. It will be unveiled at Truck World in Toronto in April. 

According to Denny Mooney, Senior Vice President, Global Product Development, Navistar, Inc., four key principles guided the new truck’s engineering and design: maximum strength and durability, driver productivity, bold styling, and “perhaps most importantly, uptime.”

“The HX Series combines aggressive styling, unstoppable capability, and driver-centric features to appeal to vocational truck owners in a whole new way,” said Mooney. “All you need to do is get behind the wheel of this truck and you will see that this is a major step forward in design, all with the driver in mind.”

Each model has a huck-bolted frame and cross members for enhanced clamping force to minimize vibration and maximize structural integrity. The trucks offer an available “industry-leading” 12.5- x 0.5-in single rail that delivers 3.5 million RBM (resistance to bending moment) at 13% less weight than a 10-in rail, allowing for a heavier load. 

Lightweight but strong materials are used extensively, including what International claims is the industry's only dedicated vocational aluminum cab. The three-piece Metton hood is said to be stronger and lighter than fiberglass and designed to resist cracking. Doors feature stainless steel piano hinges, and the “industry's strongest” tow pin is rated at 150,000 lb.

The HX Series is equipped with the new DriverFirst Cab Air Suspension, designed with 52-in springs to produce a comfortable and quiet ride. A 40° wheel cut on both right and left turns allows for improved maneuverability, and angled fenders provide greater wheel clearance on rough terrain.

For better driver visibility, vehicle developers incorporated a low-angle hood and larger rear window compared to International's prior model. The interior was designed to be roomier and more ergonomic. For example, the contoured door handles add hip room and storage space, and the central console is angled for easier-to-reach controls. Standard features include LED lighting throughout, air conditioning, power windows, and power locks.

At the Navistar Proving Grounds in Indiana, the HX Series was subjected to accelerated life testing, which simulates 10 years of wear and tear and vibration in extreme duty cycles. Vehicles underwent staggered bumps testing, which generates torsional twist in the chassis, to ensure suspension components were stabilized and equalized. Each model was also subjected to severe-duty ditch events, for which a fully loaded vehicle ran through four 12-in-deep ditches.

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