Prime mover switches makes
FAMED action hero Optimus Prime, leader of the Autobots, has been transformed — into a Western Star truck.
It will star in the fourth Transformers movie, directed by Michael Bay.
Children of the 1980s might recall that in the original cartoon series Optimus Prime was based on a cabover Kenworth, the K100. The toy version changed from a robot into a model truck.
For the first Transformers films, he switched to a Peterbilt 379, a classic American rig with a super-long bonnet and upright nose that hurts fuel economy but looks cool.
Now, Bay has revealed Optimus Prime has switched to a futuristic Western Star model that is still partially on the drawing board.
Western Star, now owned by the giant Daimler group, has been involved in the process, although it’s not clear what kind of commercial deal it has with the producer. Confirming its involvement, Daimler says the Optimus Prime character will not be limited to the big screen.
‘‘This movie will feature a new truck now in development from Western Star that showcases the next level of innovation in the trucking industry,’’ the maker says.
Daimler provides no more details, except to say the new production Western Star truck that Optimus Prime is based on will be revealed next year.
The production version of the truck won’t be an exact replica of the movie model, which features a massive bonnet bulge that would dramatically reduce the driver’s vision and triple vertical exhaust stacks towering over a corner of the cab.
Transformers 4 also will feature an Oshkosh military truck.