Production underway on Isuzu FTR

Isuzu Class 6 Medium-Duty TruckIsuzu Commercial Truck of America announced Wednesday production has begun of its all-new entry in the Class 6 medium-duty truck segmentthe 2018 Isuzu FTR.

“We believe that the all-new FTR is the truck of the future,” says Shaun Skinner, president of Isuzu Commercial Truck of America. “This truck’s combination of low-cab-forward design, Class 6 GVWR and four-cylinder diesel engine gives it fantastic maneuverability, the ability to carry more cargo than a conventional Class 6 truck, and outstanding fuel efficiency.”

The FTR is powered by Isuzu’s 4HK1-TC 5.2-liter turbocharged four-cylinder diesel engine—a first in the segment. It generates 520 lb.-ft. of torque and 215 horsepower and carries a B10 durability rating of 375,000 miles—meaning that 90 percent of engines should reach that mileage before requiring an overhaul, the company says. The truck has a gross vehicle weight rating of 25,950 lb.

Isuzu says eight wheelbase lengths, ranging from 152 to 248 in., accommodate bodies from 14 ft. to 30 ft., allowing for a wide variety of body applications.

The truck is being produced at a new 80,000-sq.-ft. Spartan Motors facility in Charlotte, Mich., which Spartan says represents a $6.5 million investment and has already brought new jobs to the Michigan workforce.

“We’re also thrilled to be working with Spartan Motors in Michigan,” Skinner says. “Much of the engineering for this truck was done at the Isuzu Technical Center of America in Plymouth, Mich., and many of the parts for it are U.S.-sourced. This is a true medium-duty Class 6 truck designed and built for this market, in this market.”

“We value our business relationship with Isuzu, and we’re excited to help bring this groundbreaking new product to the market,” says Steve Guillaume, president of Spartan Specialty Vehicles.

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