Truck builder and diesel engine manufacturer Navistar International Corporation reported it will increase its production rates at two plants — a heavy-truck assembly plant in Escobedo, Mexico, and a bus assembly plant in Tulsa, Okla.
Navistar lists 18 plants worldwide, not only assembling trucks and other vehicles but also casting iron engine components and building diesel engines. The Mexican plant produces Class 8 vehicles, i.e., heavy-duty trucks such as the International® ProStar®, and Class 6 and 7 medium-duty trucks, for the domestic market and for export.
Navistar's Tulsa plant manufactures CE (integrated conventional) school buses.
"Clearly, we're seeing some positive trends in the industry, but more importantly, we're seeing good customer response to our product offerings in the market," stated chief operating officer Jack Allen. "As a result, we're increasing our second-half production rates at two of our vehicle manufacturing operations."
In the second half of 2014, the Tulsa bus plant will increase its average daily production rate by about 17% over the first half rate. The Escobedo heavy truck plant will increase its average daily production rate by about 24%.
Navistar also reported that its truck assembly plant in Springfield, Ohio, will maintain its current production rate as several facility upgrades are completed and lean manufacturing principles are implemented there.
"In the Class 8 market, we have a complete portfolio of products that deliver the uptime, fuel economy and driver satisfaction our customers demand," according to Allen. "We're seeing strong interest from customers for the Cummins ISB engine in our medium-duty trucks and school buses. And, there's great anticipation for our vocational truck products powered by our 9-liter and 10-liter engines that will launch this summer with SCR emissions technology.”
The executive said Navistar’s truck and bus orders are increasing, and that its order backlog is 80% higher than a year ago.