International Truck kicked off National Driver Appreciation Week Monday with the introduction of major enhancements to its flagship LoneStar truck.
Designed to combine bold styling and best-in-class driver features with a number of uptime and safety enhancements, International says the new LoneStar is the result of International Truck’s DriverFirst design philosophy.
As a pioneer of Class 8 trucks called “Advanced Classics,” in which technology and innovative styling converge with next-generation aerodynamic design to deliver superior fuel efficiency, International says its new LoneStar sets a higher standard for comfort – through improved ergonomics and a quiet cab.
“As we honor the more than 3.5 million professional truck drivers across America during National Driver Appreciation Week, it is fitting that we are unveiling the beloved American classic, the LoneStar with interior updates that maximize driver productivity and improve driver ergonomics and visibility,” says Michael Cancelliere, president, Truck and Parts at Navistar. “The LoneStar is a flagship product for International and not only is it a beautifully designed truck, it represents the best in driver pride and vehicle uptime.”
“Over the past decade drivers have come to love the iconic status of the LoneStar tractor’s exterior styling and appearance with the distinctive grille and sloped hood that were inspired by International’s D-Series trucks,” adds Dave Majors, vice president, Product Development at Navistar. “Based on this feedback, we wanted to incorporate much of what we’ve recently learned from drivers and focus our engineering on an all new driver-centric interior while maintaining the iconic exterior look of the truck. As a result, we’ve made major improvements to the LoneStar in vehicle uptime performance and multiple new and improved features that enhance driver appeal.”
The updated LoneStar is available in a variety of specifications: day cab, 56 in. low-roof sleeper, 56 in. hi-rise sleeper, 73 in. hi-rise sleeper, and 73 in. sky-rise sleeper. The company says it is taking orders today and will begin market availability of the trucks is December 2017.
In describing the updated tractor, Navistar says some ke features built into the truck to provide maximum uptime include:
- The new single-canister aftertreatment system is not just 60 percent smaller and 40 percent lighter, but is also simplified for quicker servicing.
- The cab wiring includes all-new harnessing and an in-cab power distribution module that is inside the truck, away from the elements.
- All key service points under the hood, inside the cab and around the vehicle are ergonomically designed for easy access and servicing, and many components have been engineered with longer intervals between required maintenance.
- The all-new HVAC system delivers outstanding comfort and visibility. It is not only more robust and reliable, drivers will be impressed by the quick defrost functionality. During testing at a frigid 0°F, LoneStar’s best-in-class MAX defrost cleared 100 percent of the windshield in under 30 minutes from start-up.
Fuel efficiency is another focus of the new LoneStar, and International says with the addition of the Cummins X15 engine, the contoured hood, fenders and new aerodynamic pedestal mirrors, the LoneStar is up to 3 percent more fuel efficient than the previous generation. The LoneStar also is available in specialized ratings to dial in the ideal balance of performance and efficiency required for any on-highway operation, the company says.
New LoneStars also can be equipped as an option with OnCommand Connection, the Navistar’s remote diagnostics system and over-the-air (OTA) programming. OTA, available through the nine-pin International LINK device, enables drivers or fleet managers to utilize a mobile interface to initiate authorized engine programming at the customer’s facility over a safe, secure Wi-Fi Connection. International says the service offers drivers and fleets an easy, secure means of updating engine control modules to reflect the latest manufacturer-approved calibrations, without the necessity of visiting a dealer or other service facility.
“As a signal of our continued success in the Class 8 on-highway segment we thought it was critical to bring smart features that are all about optimizing uptime and enhancing driver appeal to the bold and stylish design of the LoneStar,” says Cancelliere. “The LoneStar rounds out our Class 8 on-highway portfolio updates and positions us well to be competitive in the market with a truck that we know drivers love to drive.”
“Now more than ever, driver retention is one of the top concerns among fleets both large and small,” adds Majors. “Therefore, enhancing the LoneStar at this time with critical driver-centric updates gives fleet operators and owners an additional tool to reward and retain drivers.”
International says the LoneStar was engineered with the DriverFirst philosophy which actively asked for driver input on how to improve the interior design of our trucks to better meet the needs of drivers who spend countless hours in the driver seat and cab. As a result, International says the LoneStar features an all new ergonomically designed interior with new digital information display, a new integrated stalk shifter integrating transmission and engine brake functionality, durable and easy to clean soft touch vinyl interior, and stylish diamond interior is standard.
The company says drivers will also notice the doors, side glass and cab mirrors have all been redesigned to enhance visibility and ultimately helping to reduce neck strain and fatigue over the long haul.
Finally, the truck maker says central to the advances of the International LoneStar are advanced driver assistance systems that support safety and efficiency goals and pave the way for additional customer-selected options. LoneStar comes with Bendix Wingman Advanced Collision Mitigation system standard and is also available with the optional Bendix Wingman Fusion. Additional safety features include improved side visibility and RollTek seats which all make the LoneStar one of the safest trucks on the road, International says.