International ProStar begins Australian testing

Local and US engineers are examining over 2,200 parts ahead of the ProStar’s Australian launch next year.

International ProStar begins Australian testing
Navistar Auspac chief engineer Adrian Wright.


Ahead of the Australian launch of the International ProStar next year, Navistar engineers have begun analysing how components are coping in local conditions.

Announced at the Brisbane Truck Show, the Cummins-powered ProStar will headline the brand’s return to Australia and ship in a range of power variants from 475hp (350kW) to 550hp (405kW).

Engineers in Australia and the US have been testing the North American top-selling truck for its suitability down under, utilising information it has gained over the past five years with the Cat brand to examine the ProStar’s current durability.

Navistar Auspac chief engineer Adrian Wright is heading the analysis, along with senior engineers John Drakopoulos and Garry Perkins and US counterparts.

"This is certainly no quick ‘tick the box’ exercise," Wright says.

"Between now and ProStar’s commercial availability next year, every component and assembly will be assessed, evaluated and ultimately validated for Australian conditions."

The chief engineer says they will compare the truck’s aerodynamics and fuel efficiency to the US and examine each of the 2,200 parts and assemblies that make up the right-hand drive ProStar’s ‘bill of materials’.

 "Everything is being assessed, from the chassis to cab structures, to minor components and attachments, and electrical systems," Wright says.

"Where there is the possibility for difference between the US and Australia in the durability of a particular part or assembly, then that difference is analysed, tested and if necessary, the component is strengthened.

"So far there has been little need to change anything but this is an ongoing exercise and it won’t be complete until we’re sure that each part or assembly will meet its original design goals under Australian conditions."

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The process will also leverage the company’s integrated computer engineering system to quickly evaluate real-time issues.

"The time benefit is extraordinary because it largely nullifies the time difference between Australia and the US, and results can be achieved very quickly," Wright says.

"For instance, an engineer assessing a particular part in the Springfield (Ohio) production plant can finish his day’s work, then one of our team takes over and that part can be validated in half the time it would’ve taken one engineer."

While the evaluation process continues, the International ProStar made a splash at the Brisbane Truck Show winning the coveted Truck of the Show award and marked the return of the brand after a six-year hiatus.

The truck is powered by a 15 litre Cummins ISXe5 and features an Eaton 18-speed overdrive transmission in manual or automated UltraShift-Plus variants.

It will be available in day cab and two sleeper cab forms with a gross combination mass of 90 tonnes.

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