Daimler Trucks North America Celebrates a Century of Innovation

PORTLAND, Ore. – Daimler Trucks North America (DTNA) is set to celebrate a century of innovation with anniversaries of Freightliner, Detroit, Western Star and Thomas Built Bus brands.  

Throughout 2017 DTNA will celebrate its legacy of delivering uncompromising quality, value and durability for more than one hundred years.  With advanced engineering solutions—like Detroit™ engines, best-in-class safety systems, fuel economy and low-cost maintenance and service, DTNA is positioned to continue providing innovative solutions to its customers for the next one hundred years and beyond.

This year, Freightliner Trucks celebrates 75 years of innovation while Western Star Trucks hits 50 years of rugged performance, Thomas Built Bus enjoys 100 years of business and Detroit reaches a milestone of offering industry-leading engines for almost 80 years. 

From the 1942 debut of the Freightliner Model 600 “Shovelnose,” the industry’s first all-aluminum cab, to the 2017 launch of the new Cascadia, which fully integrates technology and safety systems, Freightliner Trucks has been at the center of industry innovation for 75 years. Along the way Freightliner has pushed the boundaries of fuel efficiency with the SuperTruck program and revolutionized commercial vehicle technology and safety systems with the Freightliner Inspiration Truck, the first licensed autonomous truck to operate on a North American highway. 

Western Star Trucks can trace its roots back 50 years to Canadian mining and logging operations. With the recent launch of the 5700XE and the innovative 6900 Multi-Body Transformer (MBT), Western Star enters its anniversary year with strong momentum. 

Known for its innovative and rugged cab design and unrivaled handmade quality, Western Star blends the toughness needed to withstand rough logging roads with the efficiency required for a long-haul, over the road applications, all while maintaining its reputation for ultra-tough trucks.

In 2016 Thomas Built Bus celebrated 100 years of business.  Beginning in 1916 as a street car manufacturer and transitioning to school buses in 1936, founder Perley A. Thomas and company have been at the forefront of innovation for more than 100 years.  Thomas Built manufactures all of its product offerings at several High Point, North Carolina facilities, including its most popular Saf-T-Liner C2 conventional school bus.

Thomas Built continues to innovate in both design and manufacturing.  In 2011 Thomas Built became and remains the only school bus manufacturer to achieve zero-waste-to-landfill operations - a true testament to its already robust environmental efforts.  Thomas Built offers alternative fuel options such as compressed natural gas and propane.

Additionally, for nearly the last 80 years Detroit Diesel Corporation (DDC) has been providing industry leading engines, to the commercial vehicle industry. Since Daimler’s acquisition of DDC in 2000, they expanded to include axles, transmissions, active safety systems and connected vehicle services for the commercial transportation industry. The Detroit brand is at the core of DTNA vehicle’s industry-leading products and innovations in efficiency, durability, connectivity and safety. The optimization of the Integration Detroit Powertrain in the new Freightliner Cascadia and Western Star 5700XE continues to set new benchmarks in fuel economy. 

“I am very proud of our company’s rich history,” said Martin Daum, president and CEO, Daimler Trucks North America. “We have a portfolio of brands that, while very different, share a strong legacy of innovation. Over the past century we’ve grown into North America’s undisputed market leader, and as we celebrate our past, we’re looking forward to a future that pushes the boundaries of innovation.”

About Daimler Trucks North America

Daimler Trucks North America LLC, headquartered in Portland, Ore., is the leading heavy-duty truck manufacturer in North America. Daimler Trucks North America produces and markets commercial vehicles under the Freightliner, Western Star and Thomas Built Buses nameplates. Daimler Trucks North America is a Daimler company, the world’s leading commercial vehicle manufacturer.

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