Report: Nissan To Roll Out Heavy-Duty Diesel Pickups In US by 2009
29 October 2006
The Nihon Keizai Shimbun reports that Nissan is introducing heavy-duty pickup trucks in the US models equipped with 6,000cc to 7,000cc diesel engines by 2009.
According to the report, Nissan will procure the diesel engines from a third-party, and will market the trucks primarily for use in construction. The vehicles will be assembled at its Canton, Mississippi, plant with the annual sales target to be set in the tens of thousands.
With gasoline prices perched high, the U.S. auto market is seeing a rapid demand shift toward smaller cars. But General Motors Corp. and the other U.S. automakers have largely dominated the pickup truck market.
Japan’s No. 2 carmaker saw its US sales decline 10% on the year in volume terms in the first half ended Sept. 30. While it plans to completely remodel its mainline compact cars in the second half, Nissan also hopes to promote pickups and other large vehicles whose sales have remained sluggish.
Why? We need 2-4 litre diesel engines.
Posted by: fred | 29 October 2006 at 08:38 PM
7000cc diesel can move a locomotive. Two of them can make it fly.
Posted by: rexis | 29 October 2006 at 09:33 PM
Yeah, a 2 liter engine will work out really well for a 20,000 pound load, which is roughly what a Ford F-350's engine has to pull between the truck's own weight and it's full rated towing capacity. Same story for Chevy, GMC, and Dodge.
Heavy Duty trucks are all designed to tow at least 10,000 pounds, of course in addition to the 6000 or more pounds the trucks themselves weigh. That's why they need large displacement engines.
Nissan wants to get in on this small but profitable vehicle segment and 6-7 liter engines are what it takes to deliver the numbers required. The fact that they are getting the engines from a third party makes me wonder if they're going to use the new Cummins 6.4 or 6.7 liter heavy duty diesel.
Posted by: Sid Hoffman | 29 October 2006 at 09:58 PM
Its not as small a market as one might think.
A large number of horse wners who show horses need to cart 3-4 of them around at once. Thats 10-12k lb including food and tackle and everything and the trailer and the horses. Also around here its a 20-30 foot boat and all the gear and food for a week long vacation trip. They also are used in the construction induistry the miolk indistry the cattle industry a zillion and one other indutries and oh ya they are very popular for hauling show cars and recoditioned cars and small time race cars around from show to show race to race.
Its a simple physics equation realy. Tp haul a load you need a truck almost as heavy as the load or else you cant control it.
Then you add i how much profit is in each truck... BIG bucks. They can make more from one of these trucks then from an antire carlot full of econo cars.
Posted by: wintermane | 29 October 2006 at 11:42 PM
Full-size pick-up trucks are the only ones from pick-ups and SUV market who enjoy more lenient emission restrictions from MY2007. This means that modern low-emission engine could comply with emission legislation without expensive and not yet proved emission aftertreatment controls. In US/Canada it is huge market. Diesel engine is naturally the best for heavy-duty applications, like heavy towing and cargo hauling.
Good luck to Nissan.
Posted by: Andrey | 30 October 2006 at 03:09 AM
you're perfectly right: if a commercial operator needs to haul around thousands of pounds of cargo on a regular basis, he needs a big truck with a big engine. Diesel makes a lot of sense for these applications, especially if the exhaust gas is cleaned up properly.
Your other point is that carmakers, seeking profits, are also heavily marketing big trucks (and truck-based SUVs) to people that really don't need them. It is indeed much harder to make money off small cars, because the labor and sales overheads are not much small than for big cars. To make money in commodity manufacturing, you need an operation that runs like clockwork, from supply chain to production line to distribution network.
In Japan, manufacturers were forced to focus on high quality, flexible production lines, JIT integration of the supply chain and made-to-order product because the high cost of land in that country. It also helps that for various cultural reasons, Japanese tend to by a new car fairly often.
US and many European carmakers are struggling to turn a profit because they are saddled with overcapacity stemming from a bloated workforce and associated liabilities. They aim to make up for the resulting poor margins with fancier models sold in higher volume, but this has come at the expense of either product line flexibility (US) or high complexity with associated cost and quality issues (Europe). The additional volume is hard to achieve because consumers buy expensive cars less frequently. In Western Europe, a shrinking population is adding to the dilemma.
Posted by: Rafael Seidl | 30 October 2006 at 03:23 AM
Traditionally German carmakers (I really do not have an idea about others) were devoted to proved design of exceptional quality. Their “heavy metal” hardware was the example to whole world for more then 30 years. I had Opel engine in my poor Buick and it was bulletproof powerhouse. However, times changed. Japanese managed to produce hardware with same quality but lighter and more powerful. But the real problem is electronics and gadgets. Germans were too conservative to keep a pace with stellar progress in electronics, which accounts for most of progress in automotive industry. Hence the reliability problems and chronic overweight of German cars, multiplied by ridiculously unnecessary RWD layout. As I see it, Audi is on the truck to burst out of the tradition.
Posted by: Andrey | 30 October 2006 at 04:09 AM
7 litre is too small. NEEDS MOAR CCz!!!!1111
Posted by: 7 litre for teh lose | 30 October 2006 at 06:06 AM
Is Nissan trying to compete with GM/Ford and the new improved Hummer-Geiger with its 556 HP, 0 to 100 Kmh in 7.9 seconds, 30-in wheels etc?
Can you imagine 5 to 10 million of those mammoths on the roads and city streets!
Cars (PHEVS + EVS) and small SUVs ++ beware.
Posted by: Harvey D. | 30 October 2006 at 07:37 AM
"A large number of horse wners ... a 20-30 foot boat ... the construction induistry the miolk indistry the cattle industry ... hauling show cars and recoditioned cars ..."
Yep, And that is why I see dozens of these verdamned things all over the place.
Mostly, its guys trying to show that theirs is bigger than yours.
I wonder how many people would buy these monstrosities if you had to have a Class A license to drive one.
Posted by: Robert Schwartz | 30 October 2006 at 07:40 AM
I saw that Ford recently released the expected specs for the next Super Duty. Apparently if anything, I was low on my estimate. The F-350 is rated for 19,200 lbs towing, meaning in addition to the 6500 pound weight of the truck that puts the total weight around 25,700. For the commercial operators buying F-450s which should weigh around 7500 pounds, its 24k towing puts the total vehicle weight at 31,500 pounds. These trucks are definitely not toys!
"The 2007 F-350 Super Duty already offered best-in-class maximum payload of 5,800 pounds and maximum towing capacity of 19,200 pounds. The new 2008 F-450 pickup widens the capability gap, offering a maximum payload of more than 6,000 pounds and towing capacity of more than 24,000 pounds – a 5,000-pound increase over the class-leading F-350. All of this added capability comes with the same increased level of refinement found in the new 2008 F-250 Super Duty and F-350 Super Duty."
Posted by: Sid Hoffman | 30 October 2006 at 07:41 AM
Sid, those Ford Super duties are much too little. If you want to run with the big boys, you NEED one of these: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/International_CXT Nothing says "I'm a big man" like 14,500 lb curb weight, heated leather seats, digital video disc, satellite radio, and a nice big air horn to tell those wimpy little Ford, Chevy, and Dodge boys that you are coming and better get the hell out of your way if they don't want to be crushed.
Posted by: Bob Bastard | 31 October 2006 at 09:47 AM
Hey Robert Schwantz or Schwartz or what ever the hell your name is.
There are people out there who actually do real labor for living, and need trucks like the Nissan. Not everyone gets to live in their parents basements and scoot around town in a mini-cooper weenie box.
Posted by: Phil Degrave | 31 October 2006 at 04:51 PM
Sid, believe it or not I think you'll find that a typical F350 (4wd and extended or crew cab) weighs over 8000lbs, and an F450 probably even more. 2wd standard cab versions would weigh less, but I rarely see those, and when I do they are usually fleet vehicles.
Interesting to see Nissan move into this segment. I think the days of 7-8L gasoline engines for heavy trucks are coming to an end. And with 8mpg being not too unusual, that's not a bad thing.
I too am very curious to see if they'll be buying the Cummins engines. Or perhaps Navistar will start selling its diesel V8 to companies other than Ford.
Posted by: zach | 01 November 2006 at 06:58 AM
Why do people equate masculinity and big trucks?
Posted by: kyle | 06 November 2006 at 10:37 AM
does anybody know what kind of tranny nissan will have for their Heavy duty truck, maybe a CVT tranny? would make sense for mileage.
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