Isuzu Commercial Truck of America, Inc., distributor of America’s best-selling low-cab-forward trucks, announced today at the American Truck Dealers 2010 Convention & Expo here in Orlando, FL, that Spartan Motors, Inc., a leading manufacturer of specialty chassis and vehicles, has been selected to assemble gasoline-powered Isuzu N-Series trucks. Spartan will assemble all gasoline-engine models of the Isuzu N-Series chassis to Isuzu’s specifications at one of its assembly facilities, beginning in the second quarter 2011. The powertrain will employ a General Motors 6.0-liter V8 gasoline engine and Hydra-Matic 6-speed transmission. Gasoline-powered N-Series trucks had been assembled by GM at its plant in Janesville, Wisconsin, until the plant ceased operations in 2009. Last month, Isuzu Commercial Truck of America announced that an agreement had been reached with GM for the supply of transmissions and gasoline engines used for gas-powered Isuzu NPR and NPR-HD trucks in both single and Crewcab models, and that these vehicles would be reintroduced for the 2012 model year. The company also announced that it would soon be announcing the new assembler of the popular gas-engine low-cab-forward trucks. Shaun Skinner, executive vice president and general manager of Isuzu Commercial Truck of America, said, “We are excited to have Spartan, one of the industry’s most respected builders of high-quality custom chassis, help reintroduce our line of gasoline-powered N-Series trucks. Together, we will position ICTA’s dealer body to once again offer the broadest range of low-cab-forward solutions in the industry.” “I expect this to be the beginning of a long-term relationship with a world leading diesel engine and commercial vehicle organization,” said John Sztykiel, president and chief executive officer of Spartan Motors. “This relationship with the Isuzu group enhances Spartan’s ability to leverage our capacity and our engineering and manufacturing expertise, which is critical as the landscape for the commercial vehicle market is transformed by economic, environmental and regulatory forces.”
ICTA also announced here today the development of a revolutionary next-generation commercial van combining a body designed by Spartan’s Utilimaster Corporation subsidiary with Isuzu’s NPR diesel chassis. Full production of the new walk-in van is expected to begin in the second half of 2011.About Isuzu Isuzu Motors Limited (Isuzu) is one of the world’s largest manufacturers of medium- and heavy-duty trucks. Since building its first truck in 1918, Isuzu has sold over 26 million trucks worldwide. Among its innovations are the first air-cooled diesel engine in 1936, the first two-ton low-cab-forward truck in 1959, and the first direct-injection diesel engine. Headquartered in Anaheim, California, Isuzu Commercial Truck of America, Inc. (ICTA), is the distributor of Isuzu commercial vehicles in the United States. Isuzu commercial trucks have been the best-selling low-cab-forward trucks in America every year since 1986. For more information, call 866-441-9638 or visit www.isuzucv.com. About Spartan Motors Spartan Motors, Inc. (NASDAQ: SPAR) ( www.spartanmotors.com), designs, engineers and manufactures specialty chassis, specialty vehicles and truck bodies and aftermarket parts for the RV, emergency-rescue, defense, delivery and service markets. The company’s brand names—Spartan TM, Crimson Fire TM, Crimson Fire Aerials TM, Road Rescue TM and Utilimaster ®—are known for quality, value, service and being the first to market with innovative products. The company employs approximately 1,600 people at facilities in Michigan, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, South Dakota, Indiana and Texas. Spartan reported sales of $430 million in 2009 and is focused on becoming a global leader in the manufacture of specialty vehicles and chassis.