Com­pact CAT

Di­men­sions might be smaller but the CT630S is no softie

Herald Sun - Motoring - - Working Wheels - JAMES STAN­FORD james.stan­ford@cars­

A BIG bore en­gine and a com­pact prime mover — that’s the for­mula CAT Trucks has come up with to en­tice more cus­tomers.

The new CT630S is aimed straight at op­er­a­tors want­ing to run B-dou­bles.

Aus­tralia’s truck­ing reg­u­la­tions are built around mea­sure­ments that start at the front of the bumper and run to the end of the trailer.

CAT’s new truck is 265mm shorter from the bumper to the back of the cab, which means op­er­a­tors can now com­fort­ably run it with a 34 pal­let B-dou­ble.

The stan­dard CT630, which was in­tro­duced in late 2010, could some­times be run as a B-dou­ble but the truck was right on the di­men­sion limit, which meant many B-dou­ble com­bi­na­tions were too long.

This stems from the fact that the stan­dard CT630 is based on the In­ter­na­tional Prostar, an Amer­i­can truck.

Most US trucks run a sin­gle trailer and the di­men­sions used for the reg­u­la­tions don’t count the length of the cabin. So, they don’t re­ally care about the BBC (the Bumper to Back of Cab mea­sure­ment).

The stan­dard CT630 will still be avail­able in Aus­tralia, be­cause it works well with a sin­gle trailer.

CAT Trucks Aus­tralia worked with par­ent com­pany Nav­is­tar in the US to de­velop the shorter CT630S truck for Aus­tralia.

The Aus­tralian team was adamant the short truck had to have the C15 15-litre CAT en­gine, in­stead of the new CT13 13-litre, some­thing that would in­volve a lot of en­gi­neer­ing work.

“Ini­tially, they told us it couldn’t be done,” says CAT Trucks Aus­tralia chief en­gi­neer Adrian Wright.

He says that pretty much ev­ery part of the truck had to be changed to come up with the shorter CT630S.

The en­gine was el­e­vated by 50mm to as­sist air­flow and keep it cool.

There are a new bumper and steer­ing shafts, re­vised front sus­pen­sion, raised cab mounts, unique fuel tanks, re­vised in­take and ex­haust and a repo­si­tioned bat­tery box.

Wright says that even items such as the air­con­di­tion­ing tub­ing needed up­dat­ing as the di­men­sions had changed.

The bon­net is shorter but the CT630S has the same smooth and rounded de­sign as the other CT mod­els.

Wright says the de­sign cre­ates less drag than con­ven­tional blunt-nosed trucks on the mar­ket from Ken­worth and Western Star: “One’s like the front of a house brick, the other looks more like the front of a plane.”

It also has an aero­dy­namic cab top fair­ing that looks like some kind of jelly mould but is de­signed to push the air around and over the cabin in the most ef­fi­cient way.

The CT630S has a 40-inch bunk that con­tains a 711mm wide in­ner-sprung mat­tress.

There is also a stand-up sleeper cab op­tion that has been de­vel­oped in Aus­tralia, which will soon be avail­able in a se­ries of lengths and will pro­vide 1985mm of stand­ing space.

Power comes from the much-loved C15 15-litre CAT en­gine that some­how man­ages to meet ex­ist­ing emis­sion reg­u­la­tions without ex­haust gas re­cir­cu­la­tion or Se­lec­tive Cat­alytic Re­duc­tion, which means it does not re­quire AdBlue ex­haust treat­ment fluid.

It in­stead runs Diesel Par­tic­u­late Fil­ters, which col­lect soot and burn it off at su­per high tem­per­a­tures.

The en­gine pro­duces 410kW (550hp) and 2508Nm of torque and is avail­able with an 18-speed Ea­ton Road­Ranger man­ual or a fully au­to­mated Ea­ton Ul­tra-Shift gear­box.

CAT Trucks Aus­tralia first showed a CT630S pro­to­type in early 2012 but the de­vel­op­ment has taken longer than ex­pected.

This is mostly due the tough times par­ent com­pany Nav­is­tar has been go­ing through in the home mar­ket, which pushed back many projects.

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