23 April 1999
Navistar International Corporation announced plans for a new facility in Huntsville, Ala., to produce a new line of diesel engines. The planned purchase and refitting of the Huntsville facility represents a $250 million investment and is contingent on ratification of incentives offered by and through the State of Alabama.
Navistar also announced that its Indianapolis engine plant has been designated a "high volume" production facility that will focus on producing next-generation diesel engines for Ford Motor Company. The company has a contract to design and manufacture high-technology diesel engines for Ford's over 8,500-pound GVW vehicles through 2012.
The new designation for Indianapolis and the refitting of the Huntsville facility result from demand to produce next-generation Green Diesel Technology(SM) engines for OEM customers, as well as increased demand for engines for Navistar's International brand of trucks and buses. These engines will help Navistar meet reduced diesel emission standards in advance of the 2004 compliance deadline set by the Environmental Protection Agency.
The Indianapolis plant with daily production having increased from an original capacity of 500 per day to the current 1,300 per day is the highest-volume single producer of mid-range diesel engines in the industry. From 1995 through 1999, Navistar will have invested more than $280 million at Indianapolis, and the new focused facility strategy will involve another significant investment. A third engine facility in Melrose Park, Ill., produces premium International engines for medium and severe service trucks and buses.
The above announcement followed a recent sales forecast increase for 1999. Navistar, based upon continued strong demand in the United States and Canada, has raised its forecast for industry demand for heavy and medium trucks and school buses to a combined total of 415,000 units from the 380,000 it forecast last December.
The new Navistar forecast for total industry volume in the United States and Canada breaks out as follows: heavy trucks, 250,000 units, up from 224,700; medium trucks, 133,000 units, up from 124,000; and school buses, 32,000 units up from the previous forecast of 31,300 units.
Navistar International Corporation, with headquarters in Chicago, had 1998 annual sales of $7.9 billion.