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To Move A Mountain

Trucks At Bingham - Truck Builders

Index For This Page

This page last updated on March 5, 2013.

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(This is a work in progress; research continues)

(These timelines focus on the companies and specific models of trucks used by Kennecott at Bingham.)

Haulpak/WABCO (now Komatsu)

WABCO -> Dresser (1984) -> Komatsu-Dresser (1988) -> Komatsu (1994)

The WABCO name...

WABCO was founded in the U.S. in 1869 as Westinghouse Air Brake Company. The WABCO name was apparently a common abbreviation used throughout the years. More research is needed to find the date that Westinghouse formally adopted the WABCO name for its companies and products. The change was likely in the late 1960s when the concept of holding companies began sweeping corporate America's board rooms; possibly in June 1968 when LeTourneau-Westinghouse Company was acquired by American Standard.

The WABCO mining equipment division was sold to Dresser Industries in 1984.

During the American Standard years, the build plate attached to WABCO trucks read: "WABCO Construction and Mining Group, An American Standard Company."

Overview

The following comes from William Haycraft's Yellow Steel:

In 1950 LeTourneau announced the electric wheel, a revolutionary development in which an electric-drive motor and gearing were installed in the hub of a wheel. Believing it would make all other drives obsolete, LeTourneau henceforth directed his primary product development efforts toward perfecting this product. Confidence in the electric wheel concept was likely a contributing factor in his decision in 1953 to sell his business to Westinghouse Airbrake Company for $31 million. The sales agreement included the current product line and the Peoria and Toccoa plants. It also called for R. G. LeTourneau to serve as a consultant and refrain from reentering the earthmoving equipment business for five years. Rights to the electric wheel were retained by LeTourneau, and it formed the basis for a new line of earthmovers when he did reenter the business in 1958 from his plant in Longview, Texas.

George Westinghouse had founded his company in 1869, based on his patents for a railroad airbrake. Although he did not invent the first railroad airbrake, his was the first commercial success because of its fail-safe features. He went on to found the Westinghouse Electric Company in 1886 but lost control of it in the bank panic of 1907, although he retained the airbrake company until his death in 1914. Still the leading manufacturer in its field in 1952 with $93.6 million in sales, the company was seeking to diversify out of the railroad equipment business. The predicted boom in highway construction attracted Westinghouse Airbrake to earthmoving equipment, just as it did General Motors. That year the company had acquired the LeRoi Company, a maker of compressors and concrete mixers, and its acquisition of LeTourneau in 1953 put it squarely in the earthmoving equipment business.

The company would be known as LeTourneau-Westinghouse, apparently in the belief that the LeTourneau name would continue to have drawing power in the construction industry. Merle R. Yontz, vice president, treasurer, and a longtime employee of LeTourneau, was named president. (William Haycraft, Yellow Steel, pages 126, 127)

The following comes from Keith Haddock's Giant Earthmovers:

LeTourneau-Westinghouse Company was formed in 1953, when R. G. LeTourneau's earthmoving business was purchased by the Westinghouse Air Brake Company. Although L-W senior management was committed to the earthmoving equipment business, it did not offer an off-highway hauler except for the Tournarocker (articulated rear dump) types inherited from R G. LeTourneau. Accordingly, Ralph Kress was hired in 1955 to design a new line of off-highway trucks at the Peoria, Illinois, headquarters. The first two trucks were a 30-ton rear-dump and an 80-ton tractor-trailer, bottom-dump coal hauler with a 450-horsepower Cummins engine. The first LeTourneau-Westinghouse truck left the Peoria, Illinois, plant and led the 1957 Thanksgiving Day Parade on its way to the Midland Mine, located 25 miles to the west.

By 1961, LeTourneau-Westinghouse's truck line had expanded to include 22-, 27-, 32-, 42-, and 60-ton sizes. In 1965, the 120A rear-dump hauler was introduced, featuring electric wheel drive and a 930-horsepower V12 Fairbanks Morse diesel engine. The 120A was later upgraded to a 120-ton capacity and GM 1,000-horsepower engine, and was also offered as a tractor-trailer rear-dump to carry 160 tons.

The 2,000-horsepower giant Model 3200 tandem-drive diesel-electric truck, equipped with a GM 645-E4 locomotive engine, was launched in 1971. Capacity was initially rated at 200 tons and later rose to 250 tons. It measured 24 feet wide and over 52 feet long. LeTourneau-Westinghouse introduced a 120-ton mechanical-drive truck in 1978. That same year, the "Coalpak" unitized bottom-dump coal hauler came out. With a capacity of 170 tons, the Coalpak featured electric wheel drive and rear-mounted engine.

In 1984, WABCO became a division of Dresser Industries, Inc. Soon after, the entire truck line was revamped, and the WABCO name dropped. The new Dresser model designations now reflected the GVW of the vehicle, the line ranging from the 35-ton Model 140M with 140,000 pounds GVW to the 240-ton 830E at 830,000 pounds GVW.

In 1988, Japan's Komatsu Ltd. and Dresser Industries, Inc., began a joint venture for the manufacturing and marketing of construction and mining equipment in the Western Hemisphere--Komatsu Dresser Company (KDC). Since then, Komatsu has acquired 100 percent interest in KDC, and the trucks carry the name Komatsu "Haulpak." Since 1997, they have been marketed under a new company, Komatsu Mining Systems. The "Haulpak" trade name continues, as it has since the inception of these trucks in the mid-1950s.

The latest top-of-the-line truck from Komatsu Mining Systems is the 930E with a payload rating up to 320 tons, and maximum GVW of 1,059,000 pounds. Apart from its size, the industry's first electric wheel drive utilizing AC motors was the real breakthrough. Launched at Minexpo Las Vegas in 1996, the 930E truck is 26 feet 7 inches wide, 24 feet high, and over 50 feet long. (Keith Haddock, Giant Earthmovers, An Illustrated History, Crestline-MBI, 1998, pages 113-115)

Timeline

1953
Westinghouse Air Brake Company bought the earthmoving business of the R. G. LeTourneau Company in 1953. The company name was changed to the LeTourneau-Westinghouse Company and continued to offer its existing line of large earthmovers (belly and elevating scrapers) but did not offer a large, off-highway dump truck, except for the Tournarocker (articulated rear dump) types inherited from R. G. LeTourneau. Ralph Kress was hired in 1955 to design a new line of off-highway trucks at the Peoria, Illinois headquarters. The first two trucks were a 30-ton rear-dump and an 80-ton tractor-trailer, bottom-dump coal hauler with a 450 horsepower Cummins engine.

May 1, 1953
The R. G. LeTourneau Company became the LeTourneau-Westinghouse Company when Westinghouse Air Brake Company purchased the earthmoving equipment designs and manufacturing operations at Peoria (Illinois), Toccoa (Georgia), and Rydalmere (Australia).

December 1956
The first LeTourneau-Westinghouse LW-30 was produced.

1957
The Haulpak name was introduced in 1957 when LeTourneau-Westinghouse offered its first large dump trucks with mechanical drive. These Haulpak trucks were the very first high-capacity construction and mining trucks, and were immense for their time, with a rated capacity of 32 tons. The first LeTourneau-Westinghouse truck left the Peoria plant and led the 1957 Thanksgiving Day Parade on its way to the Midland Mine, located 25 miles to the west.

These were mechanical drive vehicles, with conventional engine and power train systems much like any other truck on the road, with capacities of 30 tons at first, growing rapidly to 65 tons within a few years. The mechanical drive train--diesel engine, torque converter, mechanical transmission, differential--turned out to the limiting factor for the vehicles. As the components got bigger, so did the maintenance costs, and the weak link seemed to be the transmission.

The following comes from William Haycraft's Yellow Steel:

In 1956 the LeTourneau-Westinghouse (L-W) line of scrapers, wheel bulldozers, and motor graders generated about $66 million of parent WABCO's $214.6 total sales, unimpressive growth from R. G. LeTourneau's $55.5 million in 1952, the year before the merger. In the decade preceding 1965, despite the interstate highway construction program, L-W's construction equipment sales stagnated and reached only $76.5 million in 1965. The reasons were not hard to find. In an industry with several full-line manufacturers, short-line manufacturers must offer differentiated products to attract buyers, and L-W never succeeded in doing so with its scrapers and motor graders. Euclid, also a short-line manufacturer, offered some highly differentiated machines in the late 1950s and made itself a strong second to Caterpillar in the scraper business, relegating L-W to a weak third. Dealers found it difficult to survive on the L-W line alone, so many carried other lines and diluted effort on L-W products.

Recognizing the need to diversify and broaden its product line, shortly after the merger L-W began concentrating product development resources on off-highway trucks, an initiative that culminated in 1958 with the introduction of the revolutionary Haulpak, a quantum advance in design. Using hydro-pneumatic "Hydrair" struts, the Haulpak suspension system made leaf springs obsolete, just as the optimized, variable-section, fabricated main frame made the heavy, rolled-section, straight-frame design obsolete. The new-style main frame also made possible a deep vee-type body for better load retention. Overall, the Haulpak set a new standard that all other off-highway truck makers were forced to emulate. The designer, Ralph Kress, subsequently moved to Caterpillar, where he had a hand in the development of its first off-highway truck, the 769, which was introduced in 1963.

The first Haulpaks, in the 25- to 32-ton range, were too small to be useful in large open-pit mines, but they received good acceptance from contractors. By 1960, however, L-W was offering a 65-ton unit, and in 1965 a 75-ton unit was introduced. At the 1965 Mining Show, L-W introduced its first electric truck, the 120A, a 105-ton-capacity, two-axle unit that used General Electric electrical components. A 160-ton prototype electric truck, then the world's largest, was put in the field in 1966 based on the 120A with a fifth-wheel semi-trailer dump body. The trailer wheels were also electrically driven. These large new mechanical and electric trucks were just what the mining industry was looking for, and miners were buying them in fleets.

L-W's business was down sharply in 1960, and, citing differences with the parent over policy, Merle Yontz, L-W president since the merger, resigned. His replacement was Lewis J. Burger, a former G. E. division chief. Yontz moved down the street to Caterpillar.

By the end of 1965 the Haulpak line had solidified L-W's otherwise rather weak position in the industry. Truck sales had maintained construction market volume at 25 to 28 percent of L-W's total, and the mining market was now contributing more than 10 percent and growing. L-W products, chiefly Haulpaks, were being built in Canada, Belgium, South Africa, Brazil, and Australia in wholly owned or joint-venture operations. The company still lacked track-type products and wheel loaders. In the next decade it would try to correct these deficiencies and would undergo another change in ownership.

The LeTourneau-Westinghouse Haulpak truck was a milestone of what William Haycraft called "The Interstate Decade, 1956-1965." Coming out of the same North Adams Street factory in Peoria that gave birth to the Tournapull scraper in 1938, the Haulpak was a new departure that forced all competitors to reevaluate their truck designs. By 1965 Haulpak and Unit Rig electric trucks were the choice in big, open-pit metal mines once dominated by Euclid trucks. (William Haycraft, Yellow Steel, pages 176-178, 187)

1960
The first trolley-assist electric drive haulage truck, the R. G. LeTourneau (not LeTourneau-Westinghouse) model TR-60 Trolley-Dump Pacemaker, was put into service in 1960 at the Berkley Pit of Anaconda Company in Butte, Montana. This was after LeTourneau five-year non-competitive clause with Westinghouse had expired.

1961
By 1961, LeTourneau-Westinghouse's truck line had expanded to include 22-, 27-, 32-, 42-. and 60-ton sizes.

1964
LeTourneau-Westinghouse Haulpak built its first diesel-electric drive haul truck, a 32-ton model, in 1964, but continued to offer three models of mechanical-drive trucks under the Haulpak name. In later years, the Komatsu Dresser Company claimed that there are more 100-ton and above Haulpaks in the mines than any competing make (mechanical or electric).

1965
In 1965, the LeTourneau-Westinghouse Haulpak model 120A rear-dump haul truck was introduced, featuring electric wheel drive and a 930-horsepower V12 Fairbanks Morse diesel engine. The 120A was later upgraded to a 120-ton capacity and GM 1,000-horsepower engine, and was also offered as a rear-dump tractor-trailer to carry 160 tons.

1965
The LW120A was announced by the LeTourneau-Westinghouse Company in late 1965. It was the largest off-highway, two-axle truck manufactured to date. It employed new engine power plants in the 1000 horsepower range and transmitted this power via a DC electric drive system.

1965
The 75A was introduced in 1965. By 1961, WABCO's truck line had expanded to include 22-, 27-, 32-, 42-, and 60-ton mechanical-drive trucks. In 1965, the 75-ton 75A rear-dump hauler was introduced with either Cummins or GM engines of 665 flywheel-horsepower. L-W trucks employed the patented "Hydrair" suspension using a combination of air and hydraulic oil. The wheel assemblies were attached to a piston that compressed the air inside a heavy-duty cylinder bolted vertically to the main truck frame. The 75A was upgraded to the 75B in 1967 with minor upgrades and an increase in unladen weight. The 75 A and B models were also available as tractor units which could pull 120-ton bottom-dumping coal trailers. (The Earthmover Encyclopedia, page 196)

June 7, 1968
LeTourneau-Westinghouse Company was purchased by American Standard, Inc. The LeTourneau-Westinghouse name was replaced by the WABCO acronym.

The following comes from William Haycraft's Yellow Steel:

Fifteen years after the acquisition of LeTourneau by the Westinghouse Airbrake Company, the parent became the object of a takeover battle when American Standard Inc. and the Crane Company fought for control of WABCO. Believing the terms of the American Standard offer to be more favorable, the WABCO board supported that company in the bitter fight even though Crane had acquired 30 percent of WABCO's stock. After Crane's attempt to enjoin the merger was denied, the merger was consummated on June 7, 1968, and the construction equipment business became one step further removed from corporate top management. Thirty-eight percent of WABCO's 1967 sales of $305 million had been by the LeTourneau-Westinghouse Division, and American Standard's sales in 1967 were $600 million. Lewis J. Burger was named vice president of American Standard's Industrial and Construction Products Division. The LeTourneau name was suppressed, and products took on the acronym WABCO.

Under American Standard ownership, WABCO continued to concentrate on its Haulpak line of off-highway trucks, developing ever-larger models, and its revenues from sales to the mining industry began to exceed substantially its construction industry business. It moved from the 220A, a 105-ton off-highway truck of 1965, to the 120B, which was rated from 100- to 130-tons on 30.00-51 tires. By 1970 it offered a 150-ton model, and by 1975 the 170C. All were electric-drive, two-axle units. In 1970 WABCO began testing its mammoth 3200, a three-axle, two-thousand-horsepower unit on ten 33.00-51 tires. The largest off-highway truck then in series production, the 3200's initial 200-ton rating was quickly raised to 235 tons. (The later 3200B model was rated at 250 tons.) At this point, WABCO and Unit Rig Lectra-Haul were the principal competitors for the business of the large open-pit mines.

One could logically ask what a bathroom fixture company inexperienced in capital goods was doing in the off-highway truck business, but such were frequently the results of the merger and acquisition mania. In any case, WABCO construction and mining equipment did little to enhance the overall profitability of American Standard, nor did being a small part of a larger, diversified company make WABCO any more successful in its chosen industries. (William Haycraft, Yellow Steel, pages 217-220)

1970s
WABCO introduced the 170C in the 1970s. To haul over 100 tons, WABCO adopted electric drive by General Electric for its rear-dump trucks. The 105-ton 120A appeared in 1965 with a 930-horsepower V12 Fairbanks Morse engine. Two years later this was up-rated to 120-tons capacity and GM power. For the 1970s, WABCO's 170-ton contender was the 170C electric truck with a choice of Detroit or Cummins engines with 1,450 flywheel-horsepower. (The Earthmover Encyclopedia, page 197)

1971
The WABCO Haulpak model 3200 tandem-drive diesel-electric truck, equipped with a General Motors 645E4 16-cylinder locomotive engine developing 2,000 horsepower, was launched in 1971. The truck measured 24 feet wide, 52 feet long. Capacity was initially rated at 200 tons and later rose to 250 tons.

March 1971
The LeTourneau-Westinghouse Company had been changed to WABCO by March 1971 when the Department of Interior purchased several Trail WABCO 440-H graders.

1978
WABCO introduced a 120-ton mechanical-drive truck in 1978. Also in 1978, the "Coalpak" unitized bottom-dump coal hauler came out. With a capacity of 170 tons, the Coalpak featured electric wheel drive and rear-mounted engine.

Late 1970s
Off-highway trucks were added [to Komatsu's line] to compete model for model with Caterpillar until Komatsu jumped ahead during the late 1970s by introducing the HD-1200, a 132-ton mechanical-drive unit. Caterpillar would not have an equivalent unit until 1985. (William Haycraft, Yellow Steel, page 261)

The following comes from William Haycraft's Yellow Steel:

Between 1976 and 1980, the WABCO Division of American Standard, Inc., sales grew from $249 million to $316 million, which, when inflation is considered, represented an actual shrinkage in size. Operating profits trended steadily down from $39 million in 1976 to $2 million in 1980. More and more the fortunes of WABCO were dependent on off-highway truck sales as its scrapers and graders lost share in a shrinking market. WABCO scraper and grader sales totaled only $46 million in 1979, 15 percent of the division, and the next year the decision was taken to discontinue the product lines. The Toccoa, Georgia, plant that R. G. LeTourneau had established in 1939 was closed [in 1980], and the company took an $11 million charge. Thus, the lineal descendant of the LeTourneau company that invented the wheel tractor-scraper in 1938 ceased manufacturing scrapers, and the motor grader line begun by J. D. Adams in 1885 became extinct. Only Caterpillar, Komatsu, and Terex remained in the large scraper business.

WABCO sales were flat at $310 million during 1981 but began a free-fall with the onset of worldwide recession. They dropped to $194 million in 1981, with an $8 million operating loss; 1983 was even worse at $173 million in sales and an operating loss of $15 million. A drastic downsizing was carried out in 1982. The Brazilian plant was sold, the Australian plant closed, and employment was reduced 4o percent. Since 1976 American Standard had put little capital into WABCO--a total of only about $40 million over eight years. Product upgrades had been made, but only one new truck had been introduced, a 120-ton mechanical-drive unit.

At the end of 1983, after fifteen years, American Standard concluded that off-highway trucks did not fit with bathroom fixtures and began looking for a buyer for WABCO. After its 1982 purchase of International Harvester's construction equipment business, Dresser Industries opted to add WABCO off-highway trucks to its Construction and Mining Equipment Division and paid $66.3 million, effective June 1, 1984. American Standard took a charge of $22 million. With that, WABCO passed into the hands of its third owner since R. G. LeTourneau sold out to Westinghouse Airbrake in 1953. With the sale to Dresser went the Peoria North Adams Street plant founded by LeTourneau in 1935.

WABCO never accounted for more than one-sixth [16 percent] of American Standard's business and often as little as 10 percent. In its zeal to become a conglomerate, American Standard fought a bitter, litigious battle in 1968 with Crane for control of WABCO, a business wildly divergent from American Standard's core interests, only to find it had entered a competitive, capital-intensive industry in which it was one of the smaller players. By the early 1980s the industry was no place for small, specialized manufacturers like WABCO, and American Standard folded its cards. (William Haycraft, Yellow Steel, pages 293-294)

1981
Kennecott Copper purchased eight WABCO 170-D haulage trucks, numbered as 460-467. (EquipmentWatch.com shows that the 170-D trucks were produced between 1965 and 1982)

1982
Dresser Industries purchased International Harvester's construction equipment line. (International Directory of Company Histories, January 1, 1991)

1984
WABCO sold the Haulpak truck division to Dresser Industries, Incorporated in 1984. WABCO had discontinued its scraper line in 1980.

In 1984, WABCO became a division of Dresser Industries, Inc. Soon after, the entire truck line was revamped, and the WABCO name was dropped. The new Dresser model designations now reflected the gross vehicle weight (GVM) of the vehicle, the line ranging from the 35-ton model 140M with 140,000 pounds GVW to the 240-ton 830E at 830,000 pounds GVW.

The biggest truck to bear the Dresser Haulpak name was the 240-ton-capacity 830E. The electric-drive truck was powered by two General Electric DC motors, one in each rear wheel hub driven by a 2,054-flywheel-horsepower, 16-cylinder Detroit diesel-electric generator. The truck boasted latest-technology electronic engine control and an advanced monitoring system to protect 54 critical functions. In 1988, Japan's Komatsu, Ltd. and Dresser Industries, Inc. began a joint venture known as Komatsu Dresser Company to manufacture and market construction and mining equipment. Subsequently the haul trucks were sold under the name Komatsu Haulpak. (The Earthmover Encyclopedia, page 177)

In 1984 Dresser saw an opportunity to round out its construction and mining equipment lines when the WABCO Division of American Standard became available. The off-highway truck line would complement its newly acquired International-Hough line as well as the Marion shovels. Dresser would be unique in being able to offer the open-pit mining industry a package of loading and hauling equipment from one manufacturer. It picked up WABCO for a bargain price of $66.3 million, effective June I, 1984. WABCO, along with International-Hough, Marion, and Jeffrey Galion, were consolidated into the Mining and Construction Equipment Division. For fiscal 1984 Dresser reported sales for the division of $852 million (including five months of WABCO) and an operating profit of a meager $25.5 million. With a full year of WABCO sales and a recovery in construction, 1985 sales jumped to $1.02 billion. (William Haycraft, Yellow Steel, page 272)

1984
The Dresser name first appeared on haul trucks in 1984 when the Wabco line became a division of Dresser Industries, Inc. Under the new company, the entire Wabco truck line was revamped and the Wabco name was dropped. The new Dresser model designations reflected the gross vehicle weight (GVW) of the vehicle, and by 1987 the Dresser line ranged from the 35-ton mechanical-drive 140M with 140,000-pounds GVW, to the 240-ton electric-drive 830E at 830.000-pounds GVW. (The Earthmover Encyclopedia, page 177)

1988
Dresser Company and the Japanese firm of Komatsu Ltd. set up a joint-venture in 1988, known as Komatsu Dresser Company (KDC), which became the world's second-largest builder of heavy construction equipment. Since then, Komatsu has acquired 100 percent interest in KDC, and the trucks carry the name Komatsu "Haulpak."

September 1, 1988
The joint venture between Dresser Company and the Japanese firm of Komatsu Ltd., known as Komatsu Dresser Company (KDC), was established. The new combined company became the world's second-largest builder of heavy construction equipment. The new venture was equally owned by the two companies. First year sales were expected to by $1.5 billion. The new company was to have exclusive manufacturing and marketing rights for the North, Central and South American markets of electric wheeled mining trucks. Komatsu equipment, previous imported from Japan, was to be manufactured in Dresser factories in the U.S., Canada, and Brazil. Included in the agreement were Dresser's Construction Equipment Division, along with Dresser's haulpak Division. (Dresser Industries news release dated August 16, 1988)

August 7, 1992
Dresser spun off its industrial and mining equipment divisions, including Marion shovels and its 50 percent interest in Komatsu Dresser Company, to a new subsidiary company to be named Indresco, Inc., with an effective date of August 7, 1992. (Dresser Industries news releases dated February 5, 1992 [announcement of plan], March 9, 1992 [name announced], July 28, 1992 [date of record]; New York Times, February 6, 1992)

September 30, 1993
Komatsu increased its share of ownership in Komatsu Dresser Company from 50 percent to 81 percent, reducing Indresco's percentage from 50 percent to 19 percent. (Indresco news releases dated July 20, 1993 [agreement announced], September 22, 1993 [agreement executed], and September 30, 1993 [transaction completed]) The sale was at Indresco's urging, with Indresco retaining its portion of ownership while Komatsu searched for suitable partner that would support Komatsu's "keen interest in having a U.S. partner." (undated news article published by The Aberdeen Group in 1993)

September 30, 1994
Komatsu acquired 100 percent interest in KDC, and the trucks continued to carry the name Komatsu "Haulpak." (William Haycraft, Yellow Steel, page 320, citing the Peoria General Star of August 31, 1994; see also Chicago Tribune, September 1, 1994; see also Thomas Merger and Acquisitions Index)

1996
By 1996 the trucks were being marketed under Komatsu Mining Systems, and the "Haulpak" trade name remained in use.

The latest top-of-the-line truck from Komatsu Mining Systems was the 930E, with a payload rating up to 320 tons and maximum GVW of 1,059,000 pounds. Apart from its size, the breakthrough on this vehicle is its first use of AC motors for its electric wheel drive. Launched in 1996, the 930E truck is 26 feet, 7 inches wide, 24 feet high, and more than 50 feet long.

January 1996
In a reflection of 100 percent ownership of the Dresser line of mining equipment, the Komatsu Dresser Company was renamed as the Komatsu America International Company. (William Haycraft, Yellow Steel, page 320)

Since 1997, Haulpak trucks have been marketed under a new company, Komatsu Mining Systems. The "Haulpak" trade name continues, as it has since the inception of these trucks in the mid-1950s.

On July 1, 2000, the chairman of Komatsu America retired. He had started with LeTourneau Westinghouse beginning in 1964, continuing at the same Peoria location through several acquisitions by WABCO, Dresser, Komatsu Dresser, and finally Komatsu, Ltd.

2000
The top-of-the-line truck from Komatsu in 2000 was the 930E with a payload rating to 320 tons. Apart from its size, the real breakthrough on this vehicle is its electric-wheel drive using AC motors, the first in the industry to do so. Launched at Minexpo Las Vegas in 1996, the 930E truck is 27 feet wide, and 24 feet high. The 930E initially came with an MTU engine of 2,500 flywheel-horsepower, but a "2SE" version was announced in 2000 with a Komatsu 2.550-flywheel-horsepower engine developed jointly by Komatsu and Cummins. (The Earthmover Encyclopedia, page 184)

April 2002
Komatsu America International Company was renamed as the Komatsu America Corporation.

May 27, 2008
Komatsu America Corp. announced the introduction of the model 960E rigid frame haul truck.

2009
Kennecott purchased fourteen new Komatsu model 930E haulage trucks, each with a rated payload of 320 tons.

Euclid (now Hitachi)

Overview

Euclid -> White Motor (1968) -> Daimler-Benz (1977) -> Clark-Michigan (1984) -> Volvo-VME (1985) -> Euclid-Hitachi (1993) -> Hitachi (2001)

The following comes from William Haycraft's Yellow Steel:

The [Twin Power] concept was extended to the off-highway truck line in 1949 when the Model 1FFD 34-ton truck with tandem rear axles was introduced with two 6-71 190-horsepower engines mounted side by side, each driving a separate transmission and axle. Using the same design approach, in 1953 Euclid began production of the 50-ton 1LLD truck, which had two three-hundred-horsepower Cummins engines. With the trucks there was no operational advantage to the two-engine concept. There simply were no engines of adequate size then available, but Twin Power gave Euclid a big lead in trucks. The company established a British manufacturing subsidiary in 1950, and by 1953 Euclid was a $33 million business that had 1,600 employees building 170 off-highway vehicles per month.

In a move that shook the earthmoving equipment industry, General Motors acquired the Euclid Road Machinery Company from the Armington family in 1953 for stock in a transaction valued at $20 million. Euclid president Raymond Q. Armington became general manager of the new Euclid Division of GM. Although a very small company by GM standards, Euclid brought with it a well-known name, valuable know-how in its field, and a dealer organization; it was also the market leader in off-highway trucks and bottom-dumps. Without an engine of its own, Euclid had offered both GM Detroit Diesel and Cummins engines as options in its products.

At the time, General Motors, the largest U.S. corporation, was a perennial target of the U.S. Department of Justice and a favorite whipping boy of Congress because of its dominant position in the automotive, locomotive, and coach businesses. The acquisition of Euclid brought a storm of criticism. In hearings before the Senate Antitrust and Monopoly Subcommittee in 1955, GM was accused of "swallowing up" a small, family-owned company. Armington, the principal witness, told the senators that his company had not had the capital to compete with others in the industry in development of new products, and he had no choice but to merge with a larger company. But a Cummins official testified that Euclid's purchases of engines from that company had dropped to about 25 percent of their former level in the two years following the GM takeover, the difference going to Detroit Diesel. The fact was not lost on the Justice Department.

Suddenly, the bubble burst. In a bombshell, the Justice Department announced in October 1959 that it would sue General Motors to force divestiture of Euclid. The government contended that the acquisition tended to create a monopoly and was in restraint of trade. The pattern of GM activity being attacked was the acquisition of an established but not dominant company in a non-GM line of business and the development of that company to a position of dominance. Why the government had waited six years to take such action has never been clear. GM protested that it was being unfairly prosecuted because the government had not objected to the acquisition in 1953, but the Justice Department denied ever giving prior approval. Euclid was a tiny fraction of GM's 1958 sales of $9.5 billion (Euro $) 644 million profit and 520,000 employees. The plaintive claim of Frederick Donner, the company's chair, that the Euclid Division had only a 5 percent market share was no doubt correct when the market for all types of earthmoving equipment is considered, but it had a higher share of the fairly narrow portion for which it competed.

Thus began more than eight years of litigation that clearly dampened GM's enthusiasm for major new investments in the core product line of off-highway trucks and bottom-dumps obtained in the purchase of Euclid Road Machinery. They received little attention because of the likelihood that they would have to be divested in the event the government was successful. As a result, Euclid, once the unchallenged off-highway truck market leader, steadily lost ground to LeTourneau-Westinghouse, Caterpillar, International Harvester, K-W Dart, and Unit Rig. In 1965 the six-model truck line extended from 12- to 62-tons, but basic design and appearance the units had changed little in ten years. That year, in a modest response to the sweeping changes competitors had made in truck design, a new R-35 was introduced that incorporated a vee body and modifications to Euclid's venerable leaf-spring suspension.

After the dynamic period of the late 1950s when it appeared that General Motors was driving for leadership in earthmoving equipment, the 1960s saw a significant slowing of the pace of new product introductions while competitors were accelerating. Clearly, the spark was gone. Caterpillar's outpouring of new products between 1959 and 1963 put an end to any dreams General Motors may have had of dominating the earthmoving equipment business. (William Haycraft, Yellow Steel, pages 129-132, 173-176)

The following comes from Keith Haddock's Giant Earthmovers:

Euclid Road Machinery Company of Euclid, Ohio, was the first company to specialize in haulers for off-highway use. Starting as the Armington Electric Hoist Company in 1907, and continuing as the Euclid Crane & Hoist Company from 1909, the company's products included pull-type scrapers, rollers, wagons (crawler and wheeled), and tractor equipment such as dozer blades. Later, in 1931, the Euclid Road Machinery Company was incorporated to reflect the growing earthmoving business.

In 1933, the company experimented with a 5-yard bottom-dumping semi trailer intended for off-highway use, and pulled by a Chevrolet truck with shortened wheelbase. The next year, Euclid built its own off-road truck, a rear-dump type of 7-cubic yard capacity, christened the "Trac-Truk." The success of this truck established Euclid as the first company to specialize solely in off-highway haulers. In 1936, the initial version of the famous FD-series trucks hit the dirt with its 15-ton capacity. From then on, haulers grew ever larger to keep pace with larger shovels loading them.

To overcome the limitations of available engine and transmission power, Euclid pioneered the twin-drive concept in its rear-dump trucks in 1949, with the 34-ton Model FFD. This model contained two Detroit 6-71 engines, each driving one of its tandem axles through separate transmissions. The 1LLD 50-ton rear dump followed in 1951. Billed as the largest production truck in the world, the 1LLD was powered by two 300-horsepower Cummins NHRS engines. The demand for these large trucks came from famous earthmoving contractor Western Contracting Corporation. By 1952, they were running a fleet of 30 of these behemoths. In 1958, this contractor had one of the 1LLDs rebuilt with twin 375-horsepower engines, and added a semi trailer that increased its capacity to 150 tons, resulting in a GVW of 590,000 pounds. More power was added in 1960, when twin 425-horsepower 12W1 General Motors engines were installed.

The R-X, a rear-dump hauler with a unique four-wheel-drive, articulated-frame concept, entered the market in 1965. A pair of tires on each of the four wheels carried an equal share of the loaded truck. It steered by use of hydraulic cylinders acting between the front and rear frames. Known as the R-105 from 1969, this truck came with engines ranging from 700 to 1,000 horsepower, and capacities from 85 to 105 tons.

Euclid experimented with a 210-ton capacity truck in 1971, having gas turbine power and electric wheel drive. Power came from an Avco-Lycoming 1,850-horsepower gas turbine. Although only one was built, the R-210 made headlines around the world. Like the R-105, the R-210 had equal weight distribution and electric drive to its four wheels.

Although the brand name has remained unchanged, Euclid has had several owners. In 1953, it became a division of General Motors. Then in 1968 it became a subsidiary of White Motor Corporation, following a Justice Department ruling. The ruling stated that GM had to discontinue the manufacture and sale of off-highway trucks in the United States for a period of four years, and divest itself of the Euclid name. The GM plant in Scotland was allowed to continue building trucks under another name. Thus the name Terex was given to the continuing GM products on a worldwide basis. Daimler-Benz acquired Euclid in 1977, and sold it to Clark-Michigan Company in 1984. The following year, Clark entered into a joint venture with Volvo AB of Sweden, and the VME (Volvo-Michigan-Euclid) name was established. In 1992, VME teamed up with Hitachi to form Euclid-Hitachi Heavy Equipment Inc., which makes the current line of haulers.

Currently, Euclid offers 12 rear-dump haul trucks from 32 to 262 tons in capacity. The largest, the R-260, was introduced at the Minexpo mining show in Las Vegas in 1996. The diesel-electric truck is powered by a Detroit S-4000 diesel of 2,500 horse-power and has a GVW of 850,800 pounds. With the exception of the two smallest trucks in the line (R-32 and R-36), all Euclid trucks are now built in the Guelph, Ontario, Canada, plant, which the company acquired in 1972 from Bucyrus-Erie Company. The two smallest trucks are Volvo-designed, having a heritage from the former Swedish truck manufacturer, Kockums, and are built in Poland. A line of articulated dump trucks with capacity of up to 40 tons is also sold under the Volvo name. (Keith Haddock, Giant Earthmovers, An Illustrated History, Crestline-MBI, 1998, pages 109-112)

(Read more about the history of Euclid)

Timeline

1907
The company that became Euclid was founded in 1907 in Wickliffe, Ohio, by George A. Armington as the Armington Electric Hoist Company. It was renamed Euclid Crane & Hoist Company when the plant was relocated to Euclid, Ohio. (Historical Construction Equipment Association archives)

1924
Euclid introduced the Automatic Rotary Scraper in 1924. Acceptance of the scrapers led to the creation of the Road Machinery Division in 1926, and the Division was incorporated as the Euclid Road Machinery Company, a subsidiary of the Euclid Armington Corporation, on July 11, 1931. The Euclid Road Machinery Company became independent of Euclid Armington on Jan 1, 1933. (Historical Construction Equipment Association archives)

1936
Euclid offered the first successful off-highway, rear-dump haulage truck, its model 1FD. The combination of diesel engine, modern drive line, leaf-spring suspension, and pneumatic tires made it the new industry baseline, making obsolete the earlier gasoline-powered, chain-drive heavy Mack trucks that had dominated the industry up to that time. (William Haycraft, Yellow Steel, page 81)

Euclid began as part of the Euclid Crane and Hoist Company. In 1931, Euclid split from its parent company to become Euclid Road Machinery. Then, in 1953, the Euclid Road Machinery Company was acquired by General Motors Corporation. (Construction Equipment magazine, April 1, 1997)

September 1953
General Motors acquired Euclid on September 30, 1953 and made it a division of GMC on January 1, 1954. In the mid-1950s, GMC built a new factory for Euclid at Hudson, Ohio. (Historical Construction Equipment Association archives)

November 1958
In its first use of large, off-highway haulage trucks in its Bingham Canyon open-pit copper mine, in November 1958, Kennecott Copper Corporation contracted with Western Contracting Corporation of Sioux City, Iowa to begin stripping waste material from the uppermost levels on the east side of the Bingham mine, on the 'V' Level and above. The contractor used a single Marion Model 191-M electric shovel at work filling a fleet of Euclid 50-ton rigid-frame rear-dump diesel trucks. A second Marion 191-M shovel was due to arrive by December 1958. (Kennescope, November 1958, page 19)

October 1959
The U. S. Department of Justice filed an anti-trust action against GMC on October 15, 1959 on the allegation that GMC threatened to control the off-road hauler market. To settle, GMC negotiated with White Motor Corporation during 1967 for the sale of certain parts of the Euclid Division. (Historical Construction Equipment Association archives)

After more than eight years of litigation with the Department of Justice's Antitrust Division, General Motors, in a consent decree, agreed to divest the portion of its earthmoving product line acquired in 1953 from the Euclid Road Machinery Company: off-highway trucks and bottom-dumps. Paying $24 million cash, the White Motor Company took over on July 1, 1968. It acquired the Euclid name, the old Euclid plant in Cleveland, and the rights to sell the products through the fifty dealers composing the North American GM/Euclid dealer organization. Dealers would continue to sell the GM earthmoving products not affected by the decree: scrapers, wheel loaders, and track-type tractors. For a time, GM continued to build Euclid products from its Motherwell, Scotland, plant. (William Haycraft, Yellow Steel, page 225)

February 1968
On February 15, 1968 White Motor Corporation purchased the line of Euclid off-road trucks. GMC retained the right to build and market haulers from Canadian plants and the former Euclid factories in Hudson and Scotland, but was barred from re-entering the US market until July 1, 1972. The former Euclid tractor, scraper and loader lines were also retained by GM and were produced by its Earthmoving Equipment Division, which became Terex. The British operation retained the Euclid (Great Britain), Ltd. name until December 1968, when it was renamed General Motors Scotland, Ltd. Euclid lost its international manufacturing and marketing in the deal. (Historical Construction Equipment Association archives)

White Motor Corporation operated Euclid as a subsidiary under the name of Euclid, Inc.

August 1977
White Motor Corporation sold Euclid, Inc., to Daimler-Benz AG as a subsidiary in August 1977. (Historical Construction Equipment Association archives)

From 1977 to 1984, Euclid was a subsidiary of Daimler-Benz AG of Germany. During this time the worldwide surface mining industry standardized on 170 tons as a proven and reliable truck size. Euclid's contender in this class was the diesel-electric R-170. Actually developed during the White Motor ownership and announced in 1975,the R-170 would be Euclid's flagship hauler for more than a decade. It could be fitted with Detroit or Cummins 16-cylinder engines of 1,492 and 1,519 flywheel-horsepower respectively and, from 1982, the MTU 12-cylinder 1,492-flywheel-horsepower engine was available. (The Earthmover Encyclopedia, page 180)

January 1984
Daimler-Benz sold Euclid to the Clark Michigan Company, the construction machinery subsidiary to Clark Equipment Company in January 1984. (Historical Construction Equipment Association archives)

1985
Clark formed a 50/50 joint venture company with Volvo AB in 1985. The new firm was called VME, an acronym for Volvo Michigan Euclid, and operated in separate units, Volvo BM Company in Europe and VME Americas in North America. The European unit became simply VME in 1989. In 1991, VME Americas was divided into VME Industries North America to handle Euclid products and VME Sales North America to handle wheel loaders and articulated trucks. (Historical Construction Equipment Association archives)

When Clark entered into a joint venture with Volvo AB in 1985, the VME Group was formed and Euclid became part of that organization. The group became VME Americas in 1986. And in 1992, Euclid teamed up with Hitachi to form Euclid-Hitachi Heavy Equipment. (Construction Equipment magazine, April 1, 1997)

1988
In 1988 it was changed to Volvo BM.

December 1993
VME Industries North America formed a joint venture with Hitachi Construction Machinery Company Ltd. of Japan in December 1993. Hitachi acquired a 19.5 percent share of the Euclid US operations, and the venture was called Euclid-Hitachi Heavy Equipment Ltd. (Historical Construction Equipment Association archives)

In 1993 VME and Hitachi formed Euclid-Hitachi, a joint venture dedicated to the production of rigid haulers from 36 to 260 tons used in construction and mining applications. At the beginning, VME held an 80 percent share of the venture. (Diesel Progress, North American Division, March 1, 1999)

May 1995
The VME name was eliminated in May 1995 when Volvo's parent company purchased Clark's share of the VME venture, and the former VME was renamed Volvo Construction Equipment Corporation. By 1996, Hitachi had increased its shares of Euclid to 40 percent. (Historical Construction Equipment Association archives)

In 1995, Clark opted out of the VME joint venture, selling its 50 percent of the company to Volvo for $573 million. The company was re-christened Volvo Construction Equipment, and established as a wholly owned subsidiary of AB Volvo. (Diesel Progress, North American Division, March 1, 1999)

1996
By 1996, AB Volvo was the sole parent of Volvo Construction Equipment (VCE) North America, the organization that replaced VME North America, which formerly built and sold Euclid haulers. Euclid-Hitachi Heavy Equipment Inc., a joint-venture owned 80 percent by Volvo and 20 percent by Hitachi Construction Machinery Ltd., became the manufacturing arm for Euclid trucks, which in North America were marketed by VCE. (Construction Equipment, January 1, 1996)

In 1998, AB Volvo reduced its ownership share in Euclid Hitachi Heavy Equipment Inc., from 60 percent to 20 percent. Hitachi's share is now 80 percent and it agreed to purchase the remaining 20 percent in October of 2001, making the company a wholly owned Hitachi subsidiary. In addition, Volvo agreed to sell its rigid hauler business in Australia to Marubeni Construction & Mining Equipment Ply. Ltd., Australia. (Diesel Progress, North American Division, March 1, 1999)

October 9, 1998
Hitachi Construction Machinery Co. Ltd., Purchases Majority Share of Euclid-Hitachi Heavy Equipment, Inc.

Hitachi Construction Machinery Co. Ltd., Tokyo, Japan, increased its ownership of Euclid-Hitachi Heavy Equipment, Inc., with the purchase of additional shares of issued stock from Volvo Construction Equipment, Brussels, Belgium. Hitachi has also named new executives to head the management team for the company.

Hitachi purchased an additional 40 percent of Euclid-Hitachi's issued stock, bringing its total shares in the company to 80 percent. Hitachi also announced plans to purchase the remaining 20 percent of the issued stock for Euclid-Hitachi from Volvo Construction Equipment on October 1, 2001, making it a wholly-owned subsidiary.

Based in Cleveland, Ohio, Euclid-Hitachi manufactures 32 to 260 ton rigid haulers for the construction and mining industries. Over the past twelve years, Volvo Construction Equipment has provided sales, marketing and product support for the Euclid rigid haulers, up to 90 tons for the construction market through various sales companies throughout the world. Euclid-Hitachi will maintain its headquarters in Cleveland and manufacturing facility in Guelph, Ontario. The company will work with Volvo to provide for an orderly transition to its own distribution network for the entire product line. (Euclid-Hitachi news release dated October 9, 1998)

Midway through 1998, Volvo Construction Equipment acquired 90 percent of Samsung Heavy Industries' construction equipment business for $572 million. Samsung's primary products are 10 different types of hydraulic excavators, most ranging from 5 to 45 tons. (Diesel Progress, North American Division, March 1, 1999)

October 1, 2001
Hitachi purchased the remaining 20 percent of Euclid-Hitachi from Volvo Construction Equipment on October 1, 2001, making it a wholly-owned subsidiary. (Euclid-Hitachi news release dated October 9, 1998)

October 2003
Euclid-Hitachi Heavy Equipment, Inc. closed its manufacturing facility in Euclid, Ohio, moving all truck production to Guelph, Ontario. The task of engineering research and development was contracted to a group of former engineers who remained in Euclid, operating as Pioneer Solutions LLC. (Crain's Cleveland Business, August 22, 2005)

2004
On January 1, 2004 Hitachi renamed its Euclid-Hitachi Heavy Equipment Ltd. of Guelph, Ontario to Hitachi Construction Truck Manufacturing Ltd., abolishing the Euclid name.

August 2004
Hitachi first offers its new EH5000 rigid frame haul truck, with a stated capacity of 320 tons, AC electric drive, and a 2700 horsepower Detroit Diesel engine.

(As of December 2010, the Euclid name is still displayed on trucks manufactured by Hitachi, as seen in their sales brochures.)

Unit Rig/LectraHaul (now Caterpillar)

(See also The Unit Rig Story, by Jerry A. Shelton, Retired Vice President Sales)

Unit Rig -> Terex (1988) -> Bucyrus (2010) -> Caterpillar (2011)

1935
Unit Rig and Equipment Company was founded in 1935 by a group of four Tulsa businessmen to manufacture oil-drilling equipment. Between 1941 and 1945, the company continued to produce oil rig equipment while also producing track-mounted entrenching machines and bridge launchers.

The original partnership was liquidated in 1946, with the company being reorganized in 1947. On January 22, 1951, Ken W. Davis purchased all the stock of the corporation from the two remaining partners; at that time Unit Rig and Equipment Company became a subsidiary of Ken Davis Industries of Tulsa.

The following comes from Keith Haddock's Giant Earthmovers:

Established in 1935 to build oil well servicing equipment, Unit Rig & Equipment Company first entered the off-highway truck field in 1963 with the M-85 diesel-electric truck. However, a prototype electric truck made an appearance in 1960. Using the trade name Lectrahaul, the line soon expanded to include nine models of trucks, with General Electric wheels, and pay-loads from 85- to 200-ton capacity. In 1968, Unit Rig introduced the world's largest truck--the M-200. This remarkable vehicle was the first to attain 200-ton capacity on only four wheels.

The Lectrahauls enjoyed immediate success and paved the way for general acceptance of the electric wheel drive truck in the world's surface mines. By 1979, the 2,500th Lectrahaul had been delivered, and the company boasts it has produced more diesel-electric trucks than all other makes combined.

Unit Rig today also offers six sizes of rear-dump trucks from 120- to 320-ton capacity. The 260-ton MT-4400 was the largest available when it was introduced in 1995. The prototype MT-4800 features AC electric drive made by General Atomics. At 320 tons, this will be the largest Lectrahaul to date.

Unit Rig became a division of Terex Corporation in 1988. The line remained unchanged, as the electric-drive trucks complemented the mechanical-drive trucks in the existing Terex line. (Keith Haddock, Giant Earthmovers, An Illustrated History, Crestline-MBI, 1998, page 123)

1963
Unit Rig and Equipment Company offered its first production off-highway haulage truck, the model M-85 diesel-electric truck, in the last half of 1963, following the formal rollout of a prototype M-64 model in late January 1960. Using the trade name Lectrahaul, the line soon expanded to include nine models of trucks, with General Electric electrical gear, and payloads from 85- to 200-ton capacity.

Unit Rig pioneered the development of the diesel electric-drive, rear dump truck for use in open-pit mining operations. The diesel-electric truck was based on Unit Rig's extensive experience with its application of high-horsepower diesel engines to electric-driven machinery on drilling rigs. The trucks were powered by a diesel engine turning a conventional generator, which, in turn, provided power for DC motors in each of the rear wheels.

Unit Rig & Equipment Company first entered the off-highway truck field in 1963 with the M-85 diesel-electric truck. The company had previously tested a prototype articulated diesel-electric truck, the 64-ton M-64 in 1960. The electric-drive principle found immediate acceptance with the world's surface mine and, using the trade-name Lectrahaul, the line expanded in the 1960s to include nine models with payloads from 85- to 200-tons capacity. The M-85 was rated at 85-tons capacity, but, in most applications it carried loads up to 100 tons. Engine choices of 700 to 1.000 horsepower were offered. (The Earthmover Encyclopedia, page 194)

1968
Unit Rig introduced the world's largest truck--the M-200, the first off-highway mining truck to attain 200-ton capacity on only four wheels.

In 1968, Unit Rig created a stir throughout the truck industry when it unveiled the world's largest truck, the M-200 rated at 200-tons capacity. It was not only the world's largest, but also remarkable because it could carry that outsize load on only four wheels.The diesel-electric drive provided smooth variable speed from zero to maximum without the usual gear changes. It also eliminated conventional gearboxes and drive shafts.The M-200 was supplied with a 1,650-horsepower engine, and it measured 24 feet wide by 20 feet 7 inches high--truly the monster truck of its day. (Keith Haddock, The Earthmover Encyclopedia, page 194)

1977
Unit Rig produced the BD-145, a rigid-frame, bottom dump hauler of 145-ton capacity. The first truck ran in 1977 at the Captain Mine in Illinois. It had a 1200-horsepower rear-mounted engine and the drive was through electric wheels. Only one BD-145 was built before it was updated to the similarly designed 145-ton capacity BD-30. Unit Rig also developed large bottom-dump, tractor-trailer coal haulers, such as the 180-ton capacity BD-180 that was first delivered in 1972.

By the 1970s, the standard size of haul trucks in the world's surface mines reached 170 tons. Unit Rig's contender in this category was the Lectrahaul Mark 36 with a choice of Detroit or Cummins engines with 1,450 flywheel-horsepower. Electrically driven haul trucks have a fuel-saving advantage not possible in mechanically driven trucks. On downgrades, the wheel motors act as generators providing a powerful retarding action. The kinetic energy so generated is dissipated through an air-cooled resistor bank. By 1979, Unit Rig had delivered its 2,500th Lectrahaul and the company boasted it had produced more diesel-electric trucks than all other makes combined. (Keith Haddock, The Earthmover Encyclopedia, page 195)

April 1984
In April 1984 Unit Rig purchased the Dart product line of wheel loaders and mechanical drive haulage trucks. The Dart range of vehicles included the model 600C mechanical drive front end loader which has a 48,000 pound bucket capacity and end dump trucks ranging in capacity from 85 to 120 tons. The Dart line also included tractor trailer bottom dump coal haulers with capacities from 120 to 160 tons.

1984
In 1984, Unit Rig bought the Dart line of mining trucks from Paccar in Seattle.

May 1985
In May 1985, an involuntary Chapter 11 petition was filed against Unit Rig as a part of the bankruptcy action taken against its parent company, Kendavis Industries International, Inc., of Fort Worth, Texas.

(In February of 1985, creditors brought an involuntary bankruptcy proceeding against Kendavis under Chapter 11. On November 6, 1986, three oil equipment companies owned by the Texas millionaire brothers T. Cullen Davis and Ken Davis filed a plan of reorganization that would repay $915.6 million of debt. The Kendavis Holding Company, Kendavis Industries International Inc. and the Loffland Brothers Company were forced into involuntary bankruptcy by eight banks demanding immediate payment of $319 million. On November 24, 1986, the bankruptcy court approved the reorganization plan and discharged any remaining claims.)

1986
In 1986 Unit Rig took the chassis design of its successful 170-ton Mark 36 rear dump truck, making it the tractor portion of its new BD-240 tractor-trailer bottom-dump haulage truck. When the BD-240 went to work at the Caballo Mine in Wyoming in 1986, it claimed the title of the world's largest bottom-dump truck, carrying 240 tons. Bottom-dump hauler size continued to grow and in 1997, the largest offered by Unit Rig was the BD-270, a 270-ton model with engine choices of up to 2,000 horsepower.

May 16, 1988
Unit Rig and Equipment Company emerged from Chapter 11. During the time the company has been operating under Chapter 11, it continued to develop products which meet the current and future needs of the mining industry, including (as noted above) the Lectra Haul BD-270, world's largest bottom dump coal hauler, was introduced at a mine in Wyoming in 1986. More recently, the LectraHaul MT-2120, an end dump hauler, job rated to 240 tons, was introduced in Australia where there were 12 of the MT-2120 haulers in operation. (part from Unit Rig and Equipment Company news release dated May 20, 1988)

July 18, 1988
Unit Rig became a division of Terex Corporation on July 18, 1988. The Unit Rig LectraHaul line remained unchanged, as the electric-drive trucks complemented the mechanical-drive trucks in the existing Terex line.

Terex Corporation of Green Bay, Wisconsin had announced on June 7, 1988 that it had reached a definitive agreement with Unit Rig and Equipment Company of Tulsa, Oklahoma, to purchase the U.S. and Canadian assets of the company and the stock of its foreign subsidiaries. Unit Rig became known as Unit Rig, Incorporated, a division of Terex Corporation. Unit Rig's annual sales was reported as being $75 million.

Terex Corporation and its Terex Equipment Limited and Koehring Cranes and Excavators, Inc. subsidiaries, and its Northwest Engineering Company division, designed and manufactured heavy duty, off-highway, earthmoving equipment and cranes. The company's products were used in construction, mining, industrial operations and by governments in the construction of roads, dams, commercial and residential buildings, as well as for material handling in the mining, lumber, scrap and refuse industries. (part from Terex Corporation news release dated July 18, 1988)

The following comes from William Haycraft's Yellow Steel:

Lenz [of Northwest Engineering] was not finished. In 1988 he picked up Unit Rig Equipment Company out of bankruptcy for $21.8 million. The company, a leader in the large mining truck business, was viable and had sales of $75 million, but its parent, Kendavis Industries, had reverses in the oil business and had gone bankrupt in 1985 owing creditors more than $500 million. In 1984 Unit Rig had purchased the Dart line of mechanical-drive off-highway trucks to complement its electric-drive units. With the Unit Rig purchase, Lenz acquired a 325,000-square-foot plant in Tulsa, Oklahoma.

In 1988 the Northwest Engineering Company turned itself inside out in a downstream merger and become Terex Corporation, with Northwest becoming a division of Terex. The company went public in 1988 with a NASDAQ listing, but Lenz retained control. Sales in 1988 were $343 million.

Terex's most comprehensive line and strongest market position was in the off-highway truck business. The line, originally developed under General Motors ownership after the 1968 divestiture of Euclid, consisted of seven models, 30 through 120 tons, when Lenz acquired it in 1987. A year later [1988] the purchase of Unit Rig brought a four-model line of electric-drive trucks, from the 120-ton Mark 30 through the 205-ton MT2050.

Unit Rig also built a three-model line of Dart mechanical-drive trucks, from 85 through 130 tons, which created an overlap with the Terex line. That line was subsequently rationalized and upgraded and by 1995 consisted of five models from 34- through 94-tons, with the newer models equipped with oil-disc brakes. Dart units filled the 100- to 130-ton mechanical-drive segment, although few were sold. In the meantime, Unit Rig added the MT4000 and was introducing the MT4400, a 262-ton unit.

The original Unit Rig Equipment Company electric-drive truck concept was based on technology drawn from the oilfield business.The diesel engine-DC drive had been used to power drilling rigs. (ed. note. This is not correct. The electric drive truck concept came from a proposal by GE.) A prototype was built in 1960 and followed in 1963 by production of the revolutionary Mark 85, the first commercially successful electric-drive truck. Throughout the late 1960s and early 1970s Unit Rig was the leader in the large electric mining truck business, but gradually, as the technology proliferated, the field became more crowded and no one company was able to dominate.

Dart had a long history in the mining truck business. In the 1950s and early 1960s it had led the way as the industry moved into the 65-ton and larger sizes and was a leader in the mining truck business. In 1967 it was building a 120-ton model, the largest commercially available mechanical-drive unit at the time. As the mining industry moved strongly to electric drive, Dart's mechanical-drive trucks steadily lost market share. Unsuccessful in its efforts with electric drive, the company gradually receded to the position of a minor truck supplier. (William Haycraft, Yellow Steel, pages 347-349)

(For an excellent summary of the history of Terex and Northwest Engineering from 1986-1988, see William Haycraft's Yellow Steel, pages 345-348)

Terex

The following comes from Keith Haddock's Giant Earthmovers:

U.S. Justice Department ruling was the impetus behind the birth of Terex in 1968. General Motors (GM) had to discontinue the manufacture and sale of off-highway trucks in the United States for a period of four years, and divest itself of the Euclid name. Terex was the name assigned to all GM products, which included trucks and other earthmoving equipment lines, made in the plant in Scotland.

Thus in 1972, GM reentered the off-highway truck market with a new line of models known as the 33-series. The first was the 33-15, a 150-ton diesel-electric rear-dump hauler, which had appeared as a prototype a year earlier. The 33-series trucks were rapidly introduced from 1971 to 1974, filling out a seven-model lineup from the 22-ton 33-03 to the giant diesel-electric 33-19. The 33-19 was known as the "Titan," the world's largest truck, at 350 tons in capacity. The Titan and the 33-15, both electric trucks, were built by the GM Diesel Division in London, Ontario. The other 33-series eventually replaced the R-series, which had been in continuous production at GM's Scottish plant since its establishment by Euclid in 1950. The largest Terex mechanical-drive truck was the 120-ton 33-14, introduced in 1978.

From 1981 to 1983, Terex was owned by the German conglomeration IBH, although the Terex electric trucks were retained by GM. When IBH failed, GM purchased Terex back, then sold it to Northwest Engineering Company in 1986. The following year, Terex Corporation succeeded Northwest as the parent company name. In 1988, Terex purchased truck builder Unit Rig of Tulsa, Oklahoma, giving the company a broader range that included electric-drive trucks.

Meanwhile, the Scottish plant unabatedly continued to roll out the 33-series mechanical-drive haulers, introducing new models and updating others throughout the 1980s and 1990s. In 1992, Terex made an agreement with German O&K to build Terex trucks badged with the O&K name. In 1997, five sizes from 35 to 100 tons were offered as O&K Models K-35, K-40, K-45, K-60, and K-100. These same trucks are sold as the Terex 3335, 3340, 3345, 3360, and 33100. Terex also offers a line of four articulated dump trucks up to 40-ton capacity. In late 1997, it was announced that Terex had purchased O&K's mining division which includes the haul trucks. (Keith Haddock, Giant Earthmovers, An Illustrated History, Crestline-MBI, 1998, pages 121-122)

The following comes from William Haycraft's Yellow Steel:

Having lost the name Euclid in the United States, General Motors renamed its earthmoving business the "Terex Division" and retained its "Hilite Green" color. Knowing that divestiture of its trucks would be a likely outcome, GM had spent little on them since the government brought suit in 1959 but had concentrated instead on other products.

In 1973 Terex reentered the already crowded off-highway truck business and introduced a new line that by 1975 had reached five models that ranged from the 33-05 at 28-tons to the 33-15 at 150-tons. Incorporating modern frame, body, and suspension designs, the units were superior to the old line purchased by White.

In 1975, sixteen years after the Justice Department filed suit, General Motors had come full circle. Its Terex Division seemed more competitive than ever with a broader and updated product line that included new off-highway trucks, but the promise of the 1950s had never materialized. Emphasis continued to be on mid-range and larger machines, and thus Terex focused on medium- and large-sized earthmoving contractors and open-pit mines, a fairly narrow audience. Its scrapers had numerous loyal partisans among earthmoving contractors, although it lost considerable ground in the mining industry when it allowed its truck line to become obsolete during the government suit and then was out of the business for five years. Although Terex did build track-type tractors and wheel loaders, the company remained a hauling unit specialist in the eyes of most equipment buyers. By 1975, twenty-two years after entering the earthmoving equipment business, it is doubtful that the venture had measured up to the hopes of the General Motors top management. (William Haycraft, Yellow Steel, pages 226-227)

The following comes from the AutoEvolution.com web site:

Headquartered in Westport, Connecticut, Terex Corporation is the third largest construction equipment manufacturer in the world with models specialized in construction, infrastructure, quarrying, surface mining, shipping, transportation, refining, and utility industries.

Founded in 1925, the company was acquired by General Motors in 1953 and became the GM Euclid Division. In 1957, a plant was established in Hudson, Ohio.

In the 1970s, during the GM period, Terex developed the Titan 33-19, prototype off-road earth hauler that held the record for the largest truck ever built until 1998 when the Caterpillar 797B was released.

Following a failed takeover [in 1980-1983] by IBH Holding AG, the company was reorganized as Terex Equipment Limited, a manufacturing subsidiary in Scotland, and Terex USA.

In 1986, Northwest Engineering, acquired by Randolph W. Lenz in 1983, purchased Terex USA from GM. One year later, Northwest Engineering also bought Terex Equipment Limited and Lenz decided to close the Ohio plant and move all the operations to Scotland.

In 1988, after Northwest Engineering acquired Koehring Cranes & Excavators and Benton Engineering, along with Unit Rig and Equipment Company, Randolph W. Lenz changed the company's name to Terex Corporation and turned Northwest Engineering intro one of its divisions. (AutoEvolution.com)

Unit Rig Sold To Terex

In 1988, Unit Rig became a division of Terex Corporation. The line remained unchanged, as the electric-drive trucks complemented the mechanical-drive trucks in the existing Terex stable. Unit Rig pushed the size envelope higher in 1995 when it announced the MT-4400 which, at 260 tons, was the largest production truck available at that time. Then in 1998, Unit Rig debuted a new top-of-the-line hauler, the MT-5500 with 320-tons capacity. It boasted a new electric-drive system featuring AC electric-wheel motors driven by a General Atomics brushless alternator. (Keith Haddock, The Earthmover Encyclopedia, page 195)

1996
Unit Rig offered six sizes of rear-dump trucks from 120- to 320-ton capacity. The 260-ton MT-4400 was the largest available when it was introduced in 1995. The prototype MT-4800 features AC electric drive made by General Atomics. At 320 tons, this will be the largest Lectrahaul to date.

1998
Terex Corporation purchased O&K Mining, manufacturers of large hydraulic excavators.

In early 1998, the Terex Corporation purchased O&K Mining, GmbH of Dortmund, Germany, a manufacturer of large hydraulic excavators, and combined it with Unit Rig to form Terex Mining, a subsidiary of Terex Corporation.

April 24, 2001
Terex Corporation announced on April 24, 2001 that Unit Rig, a division of Terex Mining, had successfully launched its new 150-ton payload model MT-3300 AC drive haulage truck, in use at a crushed stone quarry in Sylacauga, Alabama. The 40-foot-long MT-3300 was, at the time, the only AC drive truck of its size in the world, combining the successful General Electric AC drive systems with the proven MT design series found in larger Unit Rig trucks with payloads up to 360 tons. The addition of a 1,800 horsepower Detroit Diesel Company engine ensured that the MT-3300 with its 150-ton payload, provided the needed uphill and downhill performance. (part from a Terex Corporation news release dated April 24, 2001)

2004
Unit Rig haul truck production was moved to Acuna, Mexico after Terex purchased Noble CE, now known as Terex Mexico, which manufactured high capacity surface mining trucks and fabricated components for other Terex businesses. (source)

December 20, 2009
Bucyrus International, Inc. entered into a purchase agreement with Terex Corporation to acquire Terex's mining equipment business for $1.3 billion in cash. Terex may request to receive a portion of this purchase price, approximately $300 million, in the form of shares of the common stock. There was previously no relationship between Terex and Bucyrus. Under the terms of the purchase agreement, which was approved by the Boards of Directors of both companies, Bucyrus was to acquire and assume the liabilities of Terex subsidiaries that design, manufacture and sell hydraulic excavators, surface mining trucks, drills (other than auger drills), highwall miners and related components, parts and after-sales service, commonly known as O&K, Unit Rig, Reedrill, Superior Highwall, Halco and Hypac, with 38 facilities and approximately 2,150 employees around the world. (part from SEC Form 8-K filing dated December 21, 2009)

February 19, 2010
Terex Corporation today announced that it has completed the previously announced sale of its mining business to Bucyrus International for $1 billion in cash plus approximately 5.8 million shares of Bucyrus common stock. The products divested by Terex in the transaction include hydraulic mining excavators, electric drive mining trucks, track and rotary blasthole drills, and the highwall miner, as well as the related parts and aftermarket service businesses, including the Terex-owned distribution locations. (part from Terex Corporation news release dated February 19, 2010)

In October 2010, Caterpillar and Rio Tinto signed a five-year agreement for Caterpillar to furnish Rio Tinto's worldwide mining operations with surface mining equipment, including trucks, shovels, wheeled loaders, tracked tractors, and wheeled graders.

July 8, 2011
Caterpillar, Incorporated completed its acquisition of Bucyrus, International. On the same day, the Ministry of Commerce of the People's Republic of China approved the purchase. On May 20, 2011, the U. S. Department of Justice approved the purchase. Caterpillar made an offer in November 2010 to buy the entire Bucyrus product line of mining shovels. Included in the planned changes was for Caterpillar to move its entire mining business headquarters from Peoria, Illinois to the Bucyrus plant at Oak Creek (South Milwaukee), Wisconsin.

The Unit Rig brand name still holds significant value. Now that the company owns the entire Unit Rig product line of electric drive trucks, Caterpillar has resurrected the Unit Rig brand name and logo. Recent marketing information from Caterpillar shows a return to Unit Rig's white body color, and the return of the Unit Rig stylized UR logo.

Dart

1903
The Dart Manufacturing Company was organized in 1903. The very first Dart was a 1/2-ton "high-wheeler" with under floor engine and double chain drive. Between 1903 and 1907 Dart was based at Anderson, Indiana.

1907
The Dart manufacturing Company moved to a new factory in Waterloo. Iowa, where it was based until 1924.

1912
Dart adopted shaft drive, replacing the previous chain drive models. Early truck designs had 4-cylinder gasoline engines with chain drive but shaft drive was adopted in 1912.

1924
Dart Manufacturing was renamed as the Hawkeye-Dart Truck Company.

1925
In 1925 the name became Dart Truck Company, with the factory being in Kansas City.

During the 1930s a new range of 1-1/2 to 8-ton trucks appeared while heavy models for 10-ton payloads, plus an articulated version, were added in the late 1930s.

The following comes from Keith Haddock's Giant Earthmovers:

Established in 1903 as a highway truck builder, the Dart Truck Company built its first heavy-duty off-highway truck in 1937. A diesel-electric tractor pulling two 40-ton trailers for coal hauling was built in 1939. In the early 1950s, Dart discontinued its highway truck line in favor of off-highway trucks, which it built in ever-increasing sizes. Dart's tandem drive 75-ton Model 75-TA, designed by Ralph Kress in 1951, was a world record-beater for size. Then, in 1960, Dart came out with a 95-ton capacity, rear-dumping tractor-trailer unit known as the 95EDT. In 1966, the Model D2771 was the first mechanical-drive truck of regular two-axle configuration to beat the 100-ton barrier.

Dart offered both mechanical and diesel-electric drive in its truck line. By 1970, the line consisted of three sizes of two-axle mechanical-drive trucks in capacities up to 110-ton capacity, and 120-ton and 150-ton two-axle electric-drive trucks. The mechanical-drive models could also be equipped with trailers, giving capacities of up to 120 tons. Another interesting truck from Dart is the 85-ton Model 2080, claimed as the world's largest tandem axle mechanical-drive hauler. Introduced in 1980, it was popular for hauling coal in the Appalachians, and is still available today as the Model 2085.

After changing hands many times since its inception, Dart was acquired in 1984 by Unit Rig & Equipment Company of Tulsa, Oklahoma. In 1988, Unit Rig became a division of Terex Corporation. Dart products have continued as a separate line, but are now built only to order. (Keith Haddock, Giant Earthmovers, An Illustrated History, Crestline-MBI, 1998, page 109)

1958
The Dart Truck Company was bought by Pacific Car and Foundry Company (later known as Paccar) of Bellevue, Washington. Dart Truck Company became a subsidiary of Pacific Car and Foundry, and the Dart brand name was changed to KW-Dart (KW being a shortened variation of Kenworth). The purchase of Dart by Pacific Car and Foundry had been approved by the PC&F board of directors on February 25, 1958.

In 1945 Pacific Car and Foundry Company, based in Seattle, had purchased the Kenworth Motor Truck Company, also of Seattle, to enter the over-the-road truck market. In 1958, Pacific Car and Foundry bought the Peterbuilt line of over-the-road trucks.

1963
Kennecott bought its first KW Dart haulage trucks, which included the company's 65-ton rigid-frame model, and its 110-ton articulated model.

1965
Dart claimed it was the first to build a mechanical-drive, two-axle hauler to break the 100-ton barrier. The Dart Model D-2771 debuted in 1965 at 110-tons rated capacity. A GM 12V149 engine of 740 flywheel-horsepower powered it, but an optional turbocharged version put out 920 flywheel-horsepower. The truck featured Dart's own design of front and rear axles and suspension system combining steel springs with compressed air. Dart also offered an electric version, the DE2771, of the same tonnage, featuring a diesel-electric module comprising a Cummins engine, radiator, General Electric DC generator and exciter mounted on one frame to form a single exchangeable unit. (The Earthmover Encyclopedia, page 176)

1970
"KW" was dropped from the KW Dart brand name when the KW Dart Truck Company Division of Paccar became the Dart Truck Company Division of Paccar. Products during 1970 included heavy dump trucks for up to a 150-ton payload, powered by Caterpillar, Detroit Diesel and Cummins engines.

On January 25, 1972, Pacific Car and Foundry changed its name to Paccar, Incorporated.

1984
Due to slowing sales of mining equipment, Paccar sold the Dart line of trucks to Unit Rig and Equipment during the first quarter of 1984.

April 1984
In April 1984 Unit Rig purchased the Dart product line of wheel loaders and mechanical drive haulage trucks. The Dart range of vehicles included the model 600C mechanical drive front end loader which has a 48,000 pound bucket capacity and end dump trucks ranging in capacity from 85 to 120 tons. The Dart line also included tractor trailer bottom dump coal haulers with capacities from 120 to 160 tons.

1988
In 1988 the Unit Rig company was sold to Terex Corporation, and became part of the Terex Mining Equipment Company subsidiary.

2010
In 2010 Bucyrus International bought the Terex Mining Equipment Company from Terex Corporation.

July 2011
On July 8, 2011, Caterpillar completed its acquisition of Bucyrus. In October 2010, Caterpillar and Rio Tinto signed a five-year agreement for Caterpillar to furnish Rio Tinto's worldwide mining operations with surface mining equipment, including trucks, shovels, wheeled loaders, tracked tractors, and wheeled graders.

Caterpillar

The following comes from Keith Haddock's Giant Earthmovers:

In 1962, Caterpillar entered the off-highway truck business with the 35-ton Model 769 that featured stylish curves around the cab area giving it a 1990s appearance. Caterpillar expanded its truck line in 1970 with the 50-ton 773, and the hugely successful 85-ton 777 in 1975.

In 1985, Caterpillar boosted the top end of its truck line with the introduction of the 150-ton 785, followed the next year by the 195-ton 789. These were equipped with 1,290- and 1,705-horsepower Caterpillar diesel engines. Another boost came in 1990 with the launch of the 793 with a 240-ton capacity and 2,057-horsepower Cat D3516 diesel. These models have all since received upgrades, the 777D now running as a 100-ton truck. In 1998, Caterpillar announced the 797, its largest truck to date. With a gross vehicle weight of over 1.2 million pounds, it is 50 percent bigger than Caterpillar's 240-ton 793C, its previous largest. Except for its electric trucks designed by Ralph Kress in the 1960s, all Caterpillar's trucks have been equipped with mechanical drive and automatic power-shift transmissions. (Keith Haddock, Giant Earthmovers, An Illustrated History, Crestline-MBI, 1998, pages 107-108)

The following comes from William Haycraft's Yellow Steel:

Caterpillar had transitioned away from its traditional agricultural market since the 1930s to concentrate on the construction market opportunity. The mining market had always been of peripheral interest to the company. It did well supplying tractors and motor graders to miners, but those products, as auxiliary equipment, made up a small fraction of industry purchases concentrated on production equipment, off-highway trucks, and shovels. The introduction of the 35-ton 769 truck in 1963 did little to change that because the unit was too small to be of interest to large mining operations.

Recognizing the opportunity, Caterpillar began a large truck development program in the early 1960s. At the 1965 Mining Show the company broke a long-standing policy of showing only regular production products by displaying a prototype 100-ton electric mining truck of an unconventional side-dump design. The truck was never offered as a production model, but in late 1967 the 779, a rear-dump electric truck of 75-tons, went into production. Following a tradition of highly integrated products, the electrical components were of Caterpillar design and manufacture. The truck was not a success, however. Plagued with a variety of electrical and mechanical problems for which fixes did not appear practical, the unit was discontinued in 1970; the company bought back and scrapped about 40 trucks, as well as its electric-drive development program. It was the first bitter taste of failure in the company's history and a serious setback in its efforts to become a major supplier to the mining industry.

But where the 779 failed other new products succeeded. In 1968 Caterpillar brought on the ten-cubic-yard 992 wheel loader that soon dominated its size class. In 1970 the company announced a 50-ton off-highway truck, the 773, which was also well accepted. And five years after the demise of the 779 Caterpillar reentered the large truck business by introducing the mechanical-drive 777, an 85-ton, off-highway vehicle. Although the 777 was in part a vindication of its earlier unsuccessful efforts with the 779, the company still lagged badly in producing large hauling units for the mining industry.

Still pushing for a larger share of the mining truck business, in 1985 Caterpillar introduced the 130-ton, mechanical-drive, off-highway model 785. Unit Rig and WABCO electric-drive trucks of similar and larger capacities had been the established standard in the mining industry since about 1965. Caterpillar, a very late market entry, had a difficult challenge in gaining acceptance for the 785, although it proved a good performer and gradually became an accepted alternative. (William Haycraft, Yellow Steel, pages 200-201, 258)

1975
Caterpillar pushed upward in size when the 777 was released for service in 1975. The 85-ton rear dump took the surface mining industry by storm, selling several thousand over the next decade. Its 870-flywheel-horsepower Caterpillar engine drove through a seven-speed automatic transmission, and its box-section frame with heavy steel plates and steel castings in critical stress areas ensured trouble-free operation. The 777 was upgraded by 10 more tons to the 777B in 1984, and to the 777C in 1992. The 777D, introduced in 1996, is currently running as a 100-ton truck, boasting improved operator comfort and 938 flywheel-horsepower from its engine. (The Earthmover Encyclopedia, page 174)

1985
Caterpillar boosted the top end of its truck line in 1985 when it introduced the 150-ton 785, and again the following year with the 195-ton 789. These mechanical-drive trucks were equipped with Caterpillar diesel engines of 1,290 and 1,705 flywheel-horsepower. Another boost came in 1990 with the launch of the 793 at 240-tons capacity with a 2,057-flywheel-horsepower Caterpillar D3516 diesel. These models placed Caterpillar firmly in the worldwide large-truck market, and since their introduction, all have received upgrades. The current [in 2007] 785C, with improved operator's station, comes with a 1,348-flywheel-horsepower engine and has a payload range of 130 to 150 tons. (The Earthmover Encyclopedia, page 174)

1991
Caterpillar introduced the the 240-ton 793 off-highway truck in 1991, as the top of its three-model line of mining trucks. These were mechanical-drive units in an industry that was dominated by electric-drive in the larger sizes. In a span of six years Caterpillar had closed the gap in truck capacity with industry leaders, but competitors were already working on the next generation of more than three hundred tons. (William Haycraft, Yellow Steel, page 315)

October 2010
Caterpillar and Rio Tinto signed a five-year agreement for Caterpillar to furnish Rio Tinto's worldwide mining operations with surface mining equipment, including trucks, shovels, wheeled loaders, tracked tractors, and wheeled graders.

Liebherr

(It is not known if Kennecott used Liebherr trucks at Bingham.)

In 1995, Liebherr-Amenca, Inc. acquired Wiseda, Ltd. of Baxter Spring, Kansas, builder of the 240-ton KL-2450 electric mining truck. Liebherr continued to manufacture the KL-2450 and, a year later, added a new, smaller model, the KL-2420 in the 200-ton size class. In 1998, Liebherr established a new division, Liebherr Mining Equipment Company, to market its haul trucks and the largest of its hydraulic excavators. That same year, Liebherr adopted a new model nomenclature, the T Series, for all its haulers. The top-of-the-line 340-ton truck became the T282 featuring a AC electric-wheel-motor-drive system developed jointly by Siemens and Liebherr. In 2000, this truck was upgraded to 400-ton capacity and offered with engines to 3,500 horsepower. (The Earthmover Encyclopedia, page 186)

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