Historic Truck Brands
Iveco, an acronym for Industrial Vehicles Corporation, is an Italian industrial vehicle and bus manufacturing company based in Turin, Italy and owned by CNH Industrial Group.
In 1999 Tenneco sold the Case-(IH) agriculture division to Fiat, which the company merged into its New Holland agriculture company to form a subsidiary division referred as CNH. Fiat Agriculture had already purchased New HoIland from Ford in 1991.
In 2010 Fiat announced the the separation of its vast auto businesses – now including Chrysler – from the other divisions and in 2013 a new holding company for these separate divisions was called CNH Industrial. CNH Industrial includes Iveco, Magirius, New Holland/CaseIH (agriculture and construction), FPT (Fiat Power Technology), Financial services and Parts and Service.
Ironically for the Australian Iveco truck operation run by CNH Industrial, the Case-(IH) logo is the return of an old friend, because that IH badge used to adorn International Harvester trucks.
The name ‘Iveco’ first appeared in 1975, following a progressive merger of Italian, French and German brands. The truck brands included Fiat, Lancia and OM (Italy), Unic (France) and Magirus Deutz (Germany). Production plants are in Europe, China, Russia, Australia, Africa, Argentina and Brazil. Worldwide output of the company amounts to around 200,000 commercial vehicles and around 500,000 diesel engines annually, with a turnover of about Euro12 billion.
Iveco designs and builds light, medium and heavy commercial vehicles, quarry and construction site vehicles, city and intercity buses and special vehicles for applications such as firefighting, off-road missions, the military and civil defence.
Following the merger, the newly founded Iveco began rationalising its product range, manufacturing plants and sales network, while keeping the original brands. From 1975 to 1979, the Iveco range embraced 200 basic models and 600 versions spanning from 2.7 tonnes GVM to over 100 tons GCM for heavy vehicles, as well as buses and diesel engines.
In 1977 the aged OM Lupetto was replaced by the Iveco Zeta, followed by the Daily in 1978. Two years later came Iveco’s first turbo-diesel engine for heavy industrial vehicles.
The Turbostar was based on a Fiat heavy truck and was launched in 1984.
In 1986 Iveco took a 52-percent stake in Iveco Ford Truck Ltd: a joint venture with Ford of Europe’s truck division. Ford UK took over production and sales of some vehicles in the Iveco range and continued production of the Cargo.
At the same time Iveco acquired Astra, the Italian maker of heavy duty construction and off-road trucks.
The 1990s EuroCargo, EuroTech, EuroTrakker and EuroStar vehicles were launched, as Iveco’s new medium to heavy vehicle range. The EuroCargo and EuroTech were named ‘Truck of the Year’ in 1992 and 1993 respectively: the first time this recognition was awarded to the same manufacturer for two years in a row.
In 1990, Iveco acquired 60-percent of Enasa, the manufacturer of Pegaso commercial vehicles in Spain.
Iveco bought out Seddon-Atkinson in 1991, introducing its heritage of special vehicles for the construction and waste-collection industries. That same year, the first TurboDaily assembly line was inaugurated at the Nanjing Motor Corporation in China.
In 1992 acquired International Trucks Australia and, in 2001, incorporated Iveco Trucks Australia Limited.
Iveco signed an agreement with Yuejin Motor Corporation of Nanjing to form the Naveco joint venture for the production of light vehicles and diesel engines in 1995. Also Iveco’s firefighting vehicles division signed an agreement for the assembly of special vehicles with foam extinguishers in China.
In 1998 Iveco’s Cursor 8 diesel engine was released; followed the next year by Cursor 10.
In 2003 Iveco acquired Irisbus, originally part of a joint venture with Renault.
Iveco in Australia
The respected Australian International Harvester Company had been known as ‘International Trucks Australia’ since 1986.
While Fiat trucks were known in Australia they had never established a loyal customer base for Iveco to work with when it took over ITA in 1992. However, the new EuroCargo, EuroTech and the EuroStar models were competitive with some European trucks being marketed in Australia.
Iveco obviously sold its in-house products, but also kept alive local manufacture of the ACCO and some assembly of Australian-specification European models.
Over the next 20 years Iveco’s product program included development of the ACCO range and the introduction of the bonneted PowerStar in 1998 to replace International’s S-Line models: 3300/3600 and the Transtar 4700.
The EuroTech replaced the International T-Line in 1996 and the EuroStar was added to the Iveco lineup. Eventually, the Stralis range replaced the EuroTech and the EuroStar in 2004.
The Iveco EuroCargo was sold beside the ACCO, but, inevitably it replaced it.
The Daily range expanded Iveco’s market appeal.
Acknowledging that the PowerStar hadn’t filled the need for a competitive bonneted truck Iveco re-introduced the Navistar Transtar series in 2000. The arrangement was terminated for a few years when Navistar and Caterpillar flirted with Cat Trucks, but was later re-instated.