DETROIT (ots) - Traditionally, pickup trucks are
designed with cargo and hauling in mind. It was all about utility in
the 1930s and '40s. While in recent years more attention has been
given to the passengers with larger cabs, bed dimensions and payload
are still key factors in any true pickup truck.
Enter the Dodge MAXXcab concept truck, the world's first Passenger
Priority truck, premiering at the 2000 North American International
Auto Show in Detroit.
DaimlerChrysler's (NYSE: DCX) Dodge MAXXcab is a true pickup truck
-- but one with cab-forward design and sedan-like ride, handling,
space, comfort and luxury.
"Just as cab-forward changed the architecture of our passenger
cars, Passenger Priority design might influence an entire vehicle
line," said Tom Gale, Executive Vice President - Product Development
"The Dodge MAXXcab is tangible proof of our ability to reach with
design. Not only do we achieve truly new exterior proportions, but
with MAXXcab we literally reinvent the truck interior image."
The Dodge MAXXcab concept vehicle doubles as an office-on-wheels
or as a mobile daycare center, while still offering a half-ton
payload and enough bedspace for weekend projects and hobby-equipment.
The bed measures 52.7" long by 56.7" wide by 24" deep -- wider and
deeper than today's full-size truck boxes -- and comes with an
integrated picnic table and chairs for the occasional
spur-of-the-moment tailgate party.
"My inspiration came from my own experience," said Clyde Ney,
Design Manager responsible for the MAXXcab interior. "I've had pickup
trucks for more than 10 years and worked on the exterior design of
the current Dodge Ram. So I knew what I liked in a pickup truck. When
this project came up, I also asked my wife and six-year-old son what
they would change."
MAXXcab offers a luxurious front cabin with cream pillow-top
leather- tailored seats, a sports sedan-style instrument panel with
brushed aluminum details and Navy door inserts, adjustable pedals and
a child-focused rear cabin.
The driver "Infotronic" system accommodates all data and
information needs while away from the office. The center console
houses a toaster-style pop-up "plug-and-play" laptop computer with
liquid crystal displays in the instrument panel and in the rear of
the console itself.
A voice recognition system allows the driver to access the mobile
office screens and the Internet for real-time weather updates,
traffic information and e-mail. Voice commands also control the
vehicle's navigation and diagnostics systems and telephone.
In the rear, three minivan-style, built-in child safety seats
accommodate toddlers and older children, while an "Edu-tainment"
system with DVD player, Internet access and a hand-held sketch pad
will keep them busy.
Added Ney: "Remember when your parents were on a quest to find
that antique armoire or went out to buy a power generator or a
week's-worth of groceries, and you were 'forced' to join them? In
the Dodge MAXXcab, these trips will be fun."
The middle rear seat is power-controlled from the front doors.
This allows for the parents to move the seat close to the front seats
and create a "kid-cocoon." It also makes it easier for the front
passenger to tend to a toddler. A small overhead "kid-view" camera
monitors the rear cabin.
Additional side bolsters on top of the child seats create a
comfortable nap-rest while lower side nets will keep the toys close
to the toddlers. All seats have integrated speakers in the head
"The Dodge MAXXcab is the first pickup truck to give the highest
priority to the passengers," said Micheal Castiglione, Design Manager
at DaimlerChrysler's Pacifica Advanced Product Design Center in
Castiglione, the exterior designer, proposed the Passenger
Priority concept truck as part of a Design Leadership Project at
Pacifica. "In doing so, we created unique design proportions. But it
is still a true Dodge Truck -- bold and powerful. Every design
element, no matter how small, supports that image."
MAXXcab's exterior design, with its short front and rear overhangs
and cab-forward stance, reflects the appearance of semi-trucks. Its
high beltline, strong body feature line, tall bumpers and large wheel
flares give this concept the bold presence of a cab-over truck. While
extremely roomy inside, overall length is just 2.5 inches larger than
the Dodge Grand Caravan minivan.
The massive in-your-face Dodge-signature cross-hair grille,
flanked by oversized headlamps signals the vehicle's capability.
A 4.7-liter Next Generation Magnum(R) V-8 engine coupled to a
multi-speed electronic automatic transmission allows for a sprint to
60 mph in 7.7 seconds, and a top speed of 115 mph.
The Dodge MAXXcab is finished in Butane Blue Pearl paint.
Eighteen-inch wheels and tires and independent short-and-long-arm
front and rear suspension with custom torsion bars give MAXXcab
smooth, sedan-like ride and handling.
Custom crossmembers allow for maximum passenger and cargo volume.
Added Gale: "The MAXXcab concept truck is still a Dodge Truck with
all its capability. Passenger Priority does not mean cargo
requirements were forgotten."
ots Original Text Service: DaimlerChrysler Corporation
Contact: Sjoerd Dijkstra of DaimlerChrysler Corporation, 248-512-2662
Web site: http://www.media.daimlerchrysler.com Original-Content von: Daimler AG, übermittelt durch news aktuell