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First Model in New Cat Vocational Truck Line Ready for Work

Fri July 22, 2011 - National Edition
Construction Equipment Guide

The Cat CT660 is the first model in a full line of Class 8 vocational trucks designed to work as transit mixers, refuse haulers, dump trucks and in any application requiring a heavy-duty truck with the reliability, durability and low cost of ownership.

“This is an exciting historic milestone for Caterpillar,” said Steve Gosselin, vice president of customer services support division. “The CT660 is a natural expansion of the Cat product line and a perfect complement to other Cat equipment on the job site. The CT660 is a direct result of Caterpillar’s commitment to continuously develop new products that accelerate the business success of our customers — and its design results from hundreds of hours spent with vocational truck owners, fleet managers and drivers to determine their specific needs.”

Power-Train and Chassis

Engine options for the CT660 include the Cat CT11, CT13 and CT15 — with displacements of 11.1, 12.5 and 15.2 L — provide horsepower ratings from 330 to 550 (246 to 410 kW) and peak torque ratings from 1,450 to 1,850 lb.-ft. The engines are designed specifically for vocational applications, yielding optimum horsepower/torque combinations, while providing customers the flexibility to match power and performance to specific applications and operating conditions, according to the manufacturer.

The engines combine an advanced exhaust-gas-recirculation system with a high-pressure common-rail fuel system, precision intake-air management system and electronic controls to provide a blend of high performance, low emissions and fuel economy. The Compact Grapite engine block, designed to deliver durability, reduces weight by as much as 500 lbs. (227 kg) compared with conventional all-iron designs. Reduced engine weight enables users to increase payloads for added efficiency and profit.

The combination of dual, sequential turbochargers and a precise fuel injection system allows CT Series engines to develop peak torque at lower speeds, a characteristic that reduces shifting and also allows for shifting at significantly lower speeds. The new engines also are designed for fast routine service by providing easy access to components from the valve cover to filters.

A notable transmission option for the CT660 is the Cat CX31 automatic. The CX31, with six forward speeds and one reverse, is built to complement the torque output of Cat CT Series engines. The transmission features heavy-duty clutches and gear sets that allow full-power shifts, increasing efficiency and productivity, while reducing drive train shock loads, according to the manufacturer.

An electronic control module, mounted directly on the transmission to simplify wiring and to boost reliability, regulates shift points based on throttle demand and vehicle speed. With adaptive shift-control logic, the CX31 can sense driver operating style to balance fuel economy and performance, while assuring easy operation for improved productivity and safety. Power-take-off options for the CX31 include two side locations and a high-output rear location, which delivers constant live power under all operating conditions.

An aluminum lock-up torque converter in the CX31 allows the CT660 to make quick starts from a dead stop, even with heavy loads. The payoff is increased operating efficiency, resulting from correct speed and torque combinations for different applications and reduced fuel consumption. In addition, the CT660 can be specified with other transmission options, including the manual and UltraShift Plus vocational transmissions built by Eaton.

The CT660 chassis, fabricated of heat-treated alloy steel, provides the full strength of a Class 8 heavy-duty foundation required for accommodating vocational bodies. Inner rail reinforcements are available for both the one- or two-frame liner options. The chassis features a set-back axle and is available in either 116 or 122-in. (294 or 310 cm) bumper-to-back-of-cab lengths. Both chassis lengths feature an extra-tight turning radius for enhanced maneuvering and driving performance.

Exterior Features

The CT660 aluminum-alloy cab provides longer life than conventional steel cabs and weighs approximately 250 lbs. (113 kg) less. Less weight means larger payloads and potentially higher profits. In addition, an aerodynamically sloped hood increases visibility for the driver and decreases wind drag to improve fuel efficiency. The modular hood design allows customers to replace only damaged sections, resulting in lower repair costs and less downtime. An all-metal grille surround also uses modular design, as does the three-piece, stainless steel bumper.

Large power mirrors, heated to handle inclement weather, are cowl mounted for greater stability and fewer adjustments. For safety, turn signals are integrated into the mirrors. Halogen headlight bulbs are easy to access, inexpensive to replace, and are protected with impact resistant covers.

Among a long list of safety features built into the CT660 are one- or optional two-piece windshields that are curved and sloped to offer an enhanced view of the road. Generous door openings, skid-resistant steps, three-point grab irons and ergonomic non-slip door handles combine to make the CT660 accommodating to enter and exit, according to the manufacturer.

Interior Comfort and Convenience

The cab is designed to help reduce driver fatigue, enhance safety and increase productivity. Premium interior features include an air-suspension driver’s seat, with adjustable lumbar support, that reclines and adjusts to fit any driver comfortably. A premium sound insulation kit, built into the doors, damps outside noise and keeps the interior quiet. A heating/ventilating/air-conditioning system is designed to keep the cab interior comfortable in any climate, using round vents that are positioned for optimum air flow and allow quick defrosting of windshield and side windows.

The CT660 dash and center stack feature easy-to-read gauges that are designed for easy viewing through the steering wheel, and the speedometer and tachometer are combined in one gauge, allowing space for optional gauges required for specific vocational applications. The cab-interior materials and surfaces, including the integrated floor mat and one-piece rubber seat skirt, are designed for easy cleanup and long life.

The center stack also houses an interface for product link, a Cat telematics system that collects data from on-board systems and transmits the information via satellite and cellular networks to a secure Internet site. The system allows owners and fleet managers to remotely track critical information for more efficient asset management. Product link is a standard factory installed feature with a complimentary three-year service subscription.

“Our goal was to design and manufacture the ideal truck — the truck that customers have always wished they had for specific vocational applications,” said George Taylor, director and general manager of the Caterpillar Global On-Highway Group. “Our design team paid extremely close attention to all of the customer input we gathered, and we focused on turning that information into practical reality, drawing on Caterpillar’s proven power train experience with on-highway trucks and decades of cab design experience for other Cat equipment.”

The order board for the CT660 opened on April 1, 2011, with factory shipments beginning in July 2011.

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