There apparently is a bit of confusion over Autoblog's use of the term "drop" when used in reference to a new product introduction, but International nearly gave us a chance to use the word in the literal sense. Fortunately, the driver of the company's new MXT was able to drop the anchor on this beast just before it left the front of the stage.

And what a beast this is, combining International's 300 HP VT365 diesel V8 and an Allison 2200 5-speed automatic into a chassis that brings the cab of the CXT down to street level (feel free to leave your stepladders at home). The GVWR is 14,000 lbs, which leaves two tons available for cargo, and it's possible to throw your lasso around a 16,000 lb trailer if towing is your game. It's safe to say that this was the biggest truck introduction at the Chicago show without getting all metaphorical. The MXT is a derivative of a vehicle that International will be selling to the military, and it's not hard to see a wide variety of commercial applications in this platform's future.

It's clear that this is aimed at (or at least near) the Hummer H1, with projected sales of perhaps 1,500 units per year and a price between $69,900 and $85,000. Oh, yea, it has airhorns, too. Take that, Hummer.

You know what to expect after the jump - lots o' pics, including some underbody shots for those asking "Where's the beef?" and International's press release.

   

 

An Extreme Truck Like No Other on the Market – The International® MXT™

4x4 Pickup Roars to Life at the Chicago Auto Show

RXT Available in March ’06, MXT to Roll Out in Summer ‘06

CHICAGO (Feb. 9, 2006) – With its diesel engine roaring and air horn blasting, the powerful red pickup truck thundered through the walls of International Truck and Engine Corporation’s booth at its Chicago Auto Show press conference today. That’s how the company – which sent shockwaves through the pickup truck world in 2004 by launching the world’s largest production pickup truck – continued to knock down the walls of convention in unveiling its new International® MXT™ 4x4 pickup.

With 16,000 pounds of towing capacity, the new International MXT has the ability to tow three leading model pickups behind it. A cousin to the colossal International® CXT™ introduced two years ago, the MXT is a sleek and dominant truck geared for the "image" truck market, a growing niche of truck owners who want to make a powerful statement about who they are. The highly anticipated truck, a concept vehicle last year, is moving into the pre-production stage with an anticipated launch date of summer 2006.

"The new MXT is a symbol of our company’s commitment to breaking through into new markets," said Dee Kapur, president of the truck group at International Truck and Engine. "The MXT went from a concept to pre-production vehicle in a year based on the interest from our customers and the dedication of International’s development team. It showcases our ability to bring quality products to market quickly. With 100 years of experience building trucks, we’re proud to unveil the latest bold truck in International’s extreme truck family."

In addition to the MXT, International is showcasing the International® RXT™, which was a pre-production model exhibited last year at the Chicago Auto Show. The company announced that this sportier version is ready for the market with a roll-out date of March 2006 and will target commercial customers in the equestrian, boating, RV and motorsports markets.

International is even giving auto show audiences a sneak peak at a 5th wheel version of the RXT that can better accommodate trailers for those industries. The two new trucks join the CXT, the world’s largest production pickup truck that has been on the market since September 2004, as part of the International XT Family of trucks.

With the starting estimated MSRP of the MXT ranging from $69,900 to $85,000, it becomes the most affordable pickup in the XT Family. The RXT is priced starting at $76,000 and the CXT, loaded with a customized interior, starts at $115,000.

"These trucks are built for customers who want to make a statement – they promote as much as they perform," said Kapur. "CXT owners have successfully used the trucks to promote their business. We anticipate that RXT owners will use the trucks to draw attention to their hobbies, while MXT owners will seek to create an indelible image."

With the XT family, International is enhancing its target for the "image truck market" – customers who purchase trucks to create an image about themselves and their business. Built on commercial truck platforms, with luxurious interior options like leather seats, they provide the power, performance and prestige that many truck customers want.

The CXT, RXT and MXT are all powered by International diesel engines, reflecting the company’s strong history of leadership in mid-range diesel engines. The diesel engines include EPA-compliant emissions standards that keep the exhaust below federal limits. Today’s diesel engines are 20 to 40 percent more fuel efficient than gasoline engines and are delivering increasing levels of environmental performance.

 

 


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