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Truck maker will sell giant pickup
Navistar starts marketing cement mixer-based truck that dwarfs the Hummer and the F-350.
September 13, 2004: 3:07 PM EDT
By Chris Isidore, CNN/Money senior writer

NEW YORK (CNN/Money) - For the driver looking for more in a pickup -- one that dwarfs the Hummer and the Ford F-350 -- Navistar has just the ride for you.

The CXT, the new monster pickup from heavy truck maker Navistar.  
The CXT, the new monster pickup from heavy truck maker Navistar.

The new CXT -- short for commercial extreme truck and built from the same platform as the heavy-truck maker's typical tow truck or cement mixer -- will be sold starting this week by Navistar's International Truck & Engine subsidiary.

At 258 inches, or 21-1/2 feet long, the CXT is about 4-1/2 feet longer than the new Hummer H2 pickup, and about 2 inches longer than the F-350 Crew Cab.

But the way it really towers over what's on the road now is in height. At 108 inches, or 9 feet, the CXT stands only a foot below a basketball rim and more than two feet above the Hummer or the F-350.

"It's not going to fit into the standard garage," said Mark Oberle, a spokesman for Navistar, based in Warrenville, Ill., outside Chicago. "We can see it as a vehicle for business people who want to make a distinct impression. For personal use, it's for people who want to make a statement."

One statements: The buyer has a great deal of money to spend. The price for the CXT ranges from about $93,000 to $115,000 fully loaded, with such creature comforts as a DVD player and leather upholstery.

Buyers will also have to have a fair amount of money to fill it up -- it's projected to get between 6 and 10 miles per gallon of diesel fuel.

The vehicle weighs about seven tons empty and can carry another six tons in its truck bed.

What Navistar doesn't see is the vehicle being mass-produced.

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It expects to sell only about 50 this year, and it doesn't expect the CXT to challenge the market niche of the H2 sport/utility vehicle, which saw sales of 34,529 units last year.

By comparison, the Ford F-series, which includes everything from the nation's best-selling vehicle, the F-150, up through the F-350, had sales of 845,586 vehicles last year.

Navistar first showed the CXT in March at the Mid-America Trucking Show, the industry's premier event. It has sold a few already and starts marketing the vehicle to the general public this week. But Oberle said he doubts the marketing effort will include television ads or other mass-market efforts.

The vehicle will be available through International Truck's 345 dealerships, which operate 850 locations nationwide.

Oberle said he couldn't say how many dealers will be ordering the vehicles.  Top of page




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