Diesel Progress magazine has named Caterpillar Inc. as its 2003 Newsmaker of the Year. The announcement was made by the trade publication in its December issue. It is the second time the Peoria, IL, equipment and engine manufacturer has been named Newsmaker of the Year, having also received the award in 1998.
Diesel Progress has named a Newsmaker of the Year since 1997 to recognize the company, person, technology, market or subject that made the most news in the non-automotive engine-powered-equipment markets. These markets include on-highway, off-highway, marine and stationary engines and equipment.
Caterpillar was selected for its activities on many fronts, according to Mike Osenga, publisher of the 68-year old trade magazine. Osenga noted an expanded Caterpillar presence in China and India; a range of new equipment introductions; a supply agreement with Blount for the forestry markets; the overhauling of its marine engine product line; a new range of larger output natural gas engines; a joint venture with Eaton for power generation controls; and its activities in the school bus engine business.
Further, Caterpillar’s Perkins Engines operations announced plans to assemble engines in North America next year and opened a new engine manufacturing facility in Brazil this year.
But it was Caterpillar’s March announcement of its ACERT (Advanced Combustion Emissions Reduction Technology) diesel emissions technology that was possibly the single biggest story in the engine-powered equipment markets in 2003.
In fact, all the news surrounding ACERT merited the technology itself being strongly considered as Newsmaker of the Year, Osenga said.
Other candidates for Newsmaker of the Year included English construction and agricultural equipment manufacturer JCB’s decision to build its own diesel engines; DaimlerChrysler’s announced vertical integration strategy in its commercial truck business; Italy’s Same buying into Deutz; new large spark-ignited engine emissions standards; AGCO also getting into the diesel business, as well as an apparent drift back towards vertical integration by many major equipment manufacturers.
“What it came down to was, that in sheer volume of news in 2003, Caterpillar seemed to be everywhere; emissions, engines, equipment, and manufacturing,” Osenga said. “While ACERT dominated, Cat made a lot of news in a lot of different areas.”
Previous Newsmakers of the Year have included: Dana Corp.; Cummins Inc.; DaimlerChrysler Corp.; and the power generation boom of the late 1990s.