Caterpillar eyes mid-year production for set-forward axle truck model

Sources: Caterpillar Inc., Peoria, Ill.; CP staff

Caterpillar has added to its Class 8 heavy-duty work truck line the CT681, a mixer- and dump-ready, set-forward axle model designed for operators contending with restrictive road and bridge load limitations. It was unveiled at ConExpo-Con/Agg 2014, nearly three years after a charter model, the set-back axle CT660, proved a key draw at the Las Vegas show’s 2011 staging.

In demonstrations involving more than a dozen customers, the CT681 has been working in a variety of field applications since the third quarter of 2013, equating to more than three years of truck operation. “Customers hauling heavy loads or working in extreme conditions truly appreciate the CT681’s rugged durability and styling,” says Caterpillar Global On-Highway Truck Product Manager Dave Schmitz. “We designed it to work hard and last for years, even in the toughest applications.”

With 114-inch bumper-to-back-of-cab length, the CT681 is powered by a Cat CT Series Vocational Truck Engine and available with Cat CX31 automatic or Eaton manual transmissions, plus an optional front frame extension with front engine power takeoff. Vertical tie-in plates mounted behind the cab simplify concrete mixer drum mounting. The CT681 and CT660 share many common features and components, including spacious, ergonomic cab, and are backed by bumper-to-bumper service at 400-plus Cat dealer locations in North America. Full CT681 production is expected in mid 2014.