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The Work Truck Show 2019 Review


It was a cold week in Indy, but that didn’t stop the industry from pumping out hot updates, new vehicles, and the most innovative solutions to work truck/van upfits. The Work Truck Show is the favorite work truck event for the MWS team, and I know I always learn so much more about the industry and what fuels the most important tools of our business: trucks.

If you weren’t able to attend NTEA’s The Work Truck Show 2019, first off—I’m sorry. But don’t worry, I’ve got a great WTS Roundup for you.



Members of the media sipped coffee and ripped through packs of HotHands as they braved the cold, snowy weather on Tuesday afternoon to witness Nissan’s reveal of its collaboration with Habitat for Humanity to design the perfect work truck. Before designing the truck, Nissan sought input from construction site supervisors and volunteers across the country to discover what they needed most from their work trucks. Their must-haves? Off-road capability, mobile office, a bed loaded with easy-to-access tools, ladders, and lockable storage.

All I can say to those supervisors and volunteers is wait until you see this truck. The collaboration features a complete mobile office, toolkit, and off-road necessities. Thinking about this Ultimate Work Titan gives me chills—and not just because it was revealed in the snow!


Ford was next with its all-new F-600 Super Duty chassis cab. This truck delivers the capability of a Class 6 truck (including a GVWR of 22,000 lbs) in a Class 5 Super Duty package. With the F-600, customers no longer have to choose between a truck that doesn’t have enough payload to carry tools to a jobsite and truck that’s simply too big.


FUSO wouldn’t be left behind. The brand revealed its gasoline-powered Class 5 FUSO FE180 cabover work truck. The truck is designed to provide power and performance and increase payload. The truck is powered by a GM 6-L V8 engine delivering 297 hp and 361 lb-ft of torque. This engine is combined with a commercial-grade Allison 1000 Series transmission. The transmission is PTO-capable, includes FuelSense 2.0 with DynActive Shifting, and can provide a 2 to 6% fuel economy improvement.


Isuzu has similar aspirations to FUSO as it has big plans to bring the convenience of its N-Series gas truck to a Class 5 vehicle. Isuzu gave show attendees a first look of its Class 5 gasoline prototype at the show. Isuzu has plans for two Class 5 models: the NQR Gas (GVWR target of 17,950 lbs) and the NRR Gas (GVWR target of 19,500 lbs). Both powered by a GM 6-L Vortec V8 and mated to an Allison RDS transmission with PTO gear. Production starts in 2020.



Freightliner is stepping into the electric vehicle market with its eM2 106. The truck—designed for local distribution, pickup and delivery, food and beverage delivery, and last-mile logistics applications—features 480 hp with a range of 230 miles. It recharges to 80% in just one hour and has a usable capacity of 235 kWh.

XL Fleet

Remember the F-150 plug-in hybrid electric from The Work Truck Show 2018? XL Fleet added another plug-in hybrid electric Ford vehicle to its product family: the Ford Super Duty F-250. According to XL reports, the XLP F-250 will provide up to 50% improvement in mpg over conventional factory units while also reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 33% during normal operation.

Spartan Motors

Under the Utilimaster brand, Spartan Motors introduced three new vehicle platforms at the show: two fully electric vehicle platforms and a truck body specifically for last-mile grocery delivery. The electrified chassis included a walk-in van in collaboration with Motive Power Systems and is powered by lithium ion batteries and includes collision mitigation, 360-degree cameras, and DOT sensors. The EV chassis offers the same performance as its traditional fuel equivalent but at an 85% reduction in operating costs and 66% reduction in maintenance costs.

The second EV chassis is the first for Spartan Motors and Cummins on a collaboration to provide an electrified last-mile delivery vehicle specifically for parcel delivery. The powertrain boasts a state-of-the-art battery system giving drivers and 85-mile range, a 3,200 lb payload, and an under six-hour charge time.

The final reveal was a temperature-controlled truck delivery vehicle, featuring a customizable and configurable cargo area with climate-controlled zones for refrigerated, frozen, and ambient temperature goods.

Mack Trucks

Mack Trucks is bringing a new package to its customers that maximizes uptime. Mack Over The Air is Mack’s remote programming solution that allows for remote software updates and the setting of vehicle parameters. The Mack Parameter Plus package enables customers to make up to 50 parameter updates per 12-month period on all model year 2018 and newer Mack vehicles equipped with Mack GuardDog Connect.



VMAC’s newest Direct-Transmission Mounted PTO Driven Air Compressor is design specifically for Ram 3500 to 5500 chassis cab Cummins Diesel trucks. The air compressor, DTM70, produces up to 70 CFM at 100 psi and is popular with commercial tire services, oil and gas mobile mechanics, utility servicing, and heavy equipment repair industries.

American Eagle

American Eagle introduced a new pull option for its American Eagle Drawer Systems. The American Eagle Pull Handle is easy to operate and is available in Heavy-Duty Aluminum (500-lb capacity) or Light-Weight Aluminum (250-lb capacity).

PRECO Electronics

PRECO Electronics introduced its PreView Side Defender II at the show. The Side Defender II actively monitors the blind spot, detecting moving vulnerable road users while ignoring stationary objects, resulting in safer driving for truck and bus operators in crowded, low-speed urban settings.

Part of the Side Defender II system, the new PreView v2 in-cab display equips operators with more intuitive audible and visual alerts while offering installers more flexibility and time savings.


What’s listed above is just a minor summary of all the exciting things presented at The Work Truck Show 2019. NTEA reported that a record 14,256 industry professionals from 28 countries attended the show in Indy. The show was so large, NTEA had to expand the event further than just the exhibitor floor.

Go ahead and make plans to visit next year for The Work Truck Show’s 20th anniversary. The show will be held at the Indiana Convention Center March 3-6, 2020. Find out more information about the show, visit

NTEA’s The Work Truck Show Review

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