Remember that big yellow Tonka truck you got on your eighth birthday--the one you banged around in the backyard like it was indestructible? Well, International has built one you can drive. Weighing in at 14,000 pounds, measuring 22 feet from nose to tail, and standing more than nine feet tall, the International CXT is now the world's-largest production pickup truck, just waiting for the right buyer to come along who wants more than the standard one-ton dualie can offer.
Loyal readers may remember when we wrote about Big Red (September/October 2003), a monster pickup truck we found running around the International proving grounds. The corporate higher-ups told us the response to that story was so overwhelming, they decided to see if they could turn fantasy into reality and make a saleable version for the U.S. market.
The CXT will be based off the 7300 severe-service platform and be offered in four-door and extended-cab versions, both with full-size eight-foot one-ton dualie beds. In fact, International, which already has a relationship with Ford as supplier of the successful Power Stroke diesels for the Super Duty line, will be buying the one-ton dualie beds straight from Ford. Although not a simple bolt-on, it is a perfect fit.
Clearly designed to look like a personal-use pickup, the 7300 chassis is typically sold by International for cement mixers, tow trucks, big-city snowplows, and construction-site dump trucks. And where the original Big Red was a Class-8 rig that required a special commercial license to operate, the CXT isn't. Although it clearly has many commercial-truck attributes, the CXT has a rated GVWR of 25,999 pounds. That just happens to be 16 ounces less than the GVW cutoff that requires a special license certification in all (but two) states for an owner/operator. Lucky us. What's not so lucky is that International will most likely make fewer than 300 CXTs in the next 12 months. That means these will be rare, possibly adding a premium to the $100,000 base price of the CXT.