International’s Truck Group will focus on establishing itself as the standard in the industry, says its new president, Dee Kapur.
In a September press conference call, Kapur said the company’s “recent announcement that we will continue to manufacture trucks in Chatham, Ontario, is an indication of our commitment” to the Class 8 market. “I have not seen anything that says we can’t re-establish ourselves as a benchmark.”
Kapur worked for 27 years at Ford and instituted performance, quality and reliability improvements for their trucks. Jordan Feiger, vice president and general manager of the heavy vehicle center, says Kapur’s success there “fits well with our goals at International.”
In the immediate future, International will focus on current products and how they can be developed into new products that will be a benchmark for the industry, Feiger said. “Our commitment to being the leader begins with continuing our success in the daycab regional and severe service vocational markets,” he said.
The Chatham plant is also an important part of the company’s strategy, Feiger said.
“We believe Chatham has the capacity to meet all the demands of the next business cycle, which we are optimistic about. We believe we can grow our share of the market during that cycle,” Feiger said.
Feiger pointed to the company’s 9000I series as a sign of success. “We’ve successfully integrated the new engines at a low cost. We also have very successful aerodynamics, including cab extenders and air fairings, which were developed in conjunction with Texas A&M University in wind tunnels and with scale models,” he said.
International plans to develop more “highly integrated, high-performing trucks,” Feiger said. The company will create “greater quality and faster innovation with supplier partnership strategies, not vertical integration.” Cummins will partner with International in supplying engines, while Fontaine will be the exclusive fifth wheel supplier. ArvinMeritor will be the preferred axle supplier.