2015 Truck & Van Preview

Whether they are rolling out new trucks, expanding their lineups with more variants of existing trucks, or adding various standard and optional features, there’s a common thread running through the light- and medium-duty segments. And that is wowing fleet owners with how what’s new will positively impact their total cost of vehicle ownership. The elements of that promise include changes to everything from how productive trucks can be to how fuel efficiently they can operate.

The top trends in the Class 1-3 segment are changes to vehicles that improve their fuel economy as well as heighten their on-the-job capabilities. Buyers will find pickups and vans that can haul more, tow more, and boast more spacious accommodations yet consume fuel far more efficiently than they did previously. Especially noteworthy light-duty news includes a major makeover of Ford’s bread-and-butter F-150 pickup that has put it on a materials diet to shed 700 lb; an on-demand 4×4 option for the Mercedes-Benz/Freightliner Sprinter van; the debut of the Chevy City Express compact cargo van; and the rollout of the Ford Transit full-size van, which is replacing the venerable E-Series.

Moving up to the Class 4-7 range, tire-kickers will want to look under a lot of hoods where they’ll find a wider range of powertrain offerings — from diesel and gasoline to natural gas, propane, and electric power along with more transmission choices. Medium-duty OEMs have also focused closely on chassis design and component placement to ease the upfitting of trucks for body makers and fleet customers. Significant mid-range truck rollouts include Mitsubishi’s new Canter FE130 Class 3 cabover, Peterbilt’s new Class 6-7 Model 220 cabover, and Kenworth’s extensive refreshing of its Class 6 K270 and Class 7 K370 cabovers. No matter if you run light- or medium-duty trucks in your fleet, you will find this exclusive editorial section succinctly presents the key information on the newest models as well as other significant changes coming to North American trucks in the year ahead.

Read the full article as it originally appeared in the print issue of Fleet Owner magazine.

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Related article: 2014 Truck and Van Preview

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