Isuzu Celebrates 40th Anniversary of Isuzu Trucks in U.S. Market

Company Poised for Success for Next 40 Years with New Electric Truck, Redesigned Cab

Isuzu Commercial Truck of America, Inc., has begun celebrating the 40th anniversary of Isuzu trucks in the U.S. market.

Isuzu Commercial Truck of America – then called Isuzu Truck of America, Inc. – was founded on March 16, 1984.The first Isuzu truck, the KS22, arrived in the United States in November 1984. That 87-horsepower truck was quickly embraced by American truck buyers who were looking for a medium-duty truck with durability, efficiency, capability and low cost of ownership. In 1986, barely a year after its stateside launch, Isuzu became the best-selling low-cab-forward truck in the U.S., a position held every year since – 37 consecutive years, according to the company. Isuzu commands nearly 80% of the U.S. low-cab-forward truck sales.

“Isuzu trucks could not have enjoyed this level of success without the support of a loyal customer following and a strong dealer network,” says Shaun Skinner, president of Isuzu Commercial Truck of America and Isuzu Commercial Truck of Canada. “I am proud to say that, of our nearly 300 dealers nationwide, four have been selling Isuzu trucks for the entire four-decade Isuzu history here, and we share this celebration with them.” The four longest-standing Isuzu dealerships are:

  • Green Isuzu Truck, Greensboro, North Carolina
  • Midway Isuzu Truck Center, Phoenix, Arizona
  • Pierre Isuzu Trucks of Everett, Everett, Washington
  • Chapman Isuzu, Tempe, Arizona

“In addition to our dealers, we owe our success to a product lineup that has always been in tune with our customers’ needs,” Skinner continued. “But we have never rested on our laurels, and we are not about to start now.”

During the first half of 2024, Isuzu will introduce its first all-electric production model to the U.S. and Canadian markets. The 2025-model-year Class 5 NRR EV will feature a full 19,500-pound gross vehicle weight rating, an Isuzu-developed battery electric platform, and an all-new cab design.

“There used to be a saying, ‘Life begins at 40.’ And although Isuzu trucks have had an amazingly successful first 40 years in the U.S. market, this really is just the beginning,” Skinner concludes. “The new NRR EV electric truck, our completely redesigned cab, our new suite of advanced driver assistance features and more prove that – while we are thrilled to be celebrating this milestone anniversary – we are really focused on the future. I have said many times that I believe Isuzu is better positioned for success now than at any time in our history. So, here’s to the next 40 years of providing innovation, quality, reliability and low cost of operation to the American market.”

Highlights of Isuzu Truck History

1929: The predecessors of Isuzu Motors Limited (Isuzu Commercial Truck of America’s parent company) build Japan’s first bus, with innovations including air brakes and an underfloor-mounted engine.

1936: The predecessors of Isuzu Motors Limited build Japan’s first air-cooled diesel engine.

1949: The name “Isuzu Motors Limited” is adopted. Isuzu is the name of a river that flows past one of Japan’s oldest and most sacred shrines. The word means “fifty bells pealing in harmony.”

1955: Isuzu diesel engines, diesel-powered snow tractors and other equipment are delivered to Japan’s Antarctic Observation Base. Isuzu equipment has been operational at the South Pole ever since.

1959: Isuzu Motors Limited introduces the Elf, the first generation of a line of forward-control vehicles now marketed in the United States and Canada as the N-Series.

1984: Isuzu KS22 enters the U.S. market.

1986: R.L. Polk certifies that Isuzu is the best-selling import commercial truck in the United States, a position now held for 37 consecutive years.

1988: The two-millionth N-Series truck rolls off the assembly line in Japan.

1994: The first U.S.-built gasoline-powered NPR-EFI is assembled in Janesville, Wisconsin.

2005: The 50,000th N/W-Series gasoline-powered truck is built in Janesville.

2010: Isuzu N-Series Trucks are the first medium-duty low-cab-forward trucks on the market to be EPA 2010 and CARB HD-OBD compliant and to be 50-state clean-idle certified.

2011: Assembly of all Isuzu N-Series gas trucks for the U.S. and Canada markets begins in Charlotte, Michigan.

2012: Reach, revolutionary walk-in van powered by Isuzu, is named Medium Duty Truck of the Year by Work Truck magazine.

2013: Isuzu N-Series is named Medium Duty Truck of the Year by Work Truck magazine.

2015: Isuzu delivers its 500,000th Isuzu-built truck since entering the North American market.

2016: Isuzu opens its first Center of Excellence in northeast Pennsylvania – a state-of-the-art, 130,000-square-foot parts distribution, training and technical assistance facility. A second Center of Excellence opens the following year in Anaheim, California.

2017: B10 durability rating of Isuzu 4HK1-TC engine is increased to 375,000 miles, meaning that 90% of Isuzu 4HK1-TC engines are expected to last 375,000 miles before they require a major repair or rebuild.

2017: Production of all-new Class 6 Isuzu FTR begins in Charlotte.

2018: Isuzu FTR named Medium Duty Truck of the Year by Work Truck magazine.

2018: The 50,000th N-Series gasoline-powered truck rolls off the line in Charlotte.

2021: Isuzu enters the Class 7 market with new F-Series models powered by the Cummins B6.7 diesel engine. Also available in Class 6 configuration, all F-Series trucks for the U.S. and Canada are assembled in Charlotte.

2022: NQR Crew Cab wins Price Digests’ Highest Retained Value Award in the Medium-Duty Crew Cab and Chassis category.

2023: The 100,000th N-Series gasoline-powered truck rolls off the line in Charlotte.

2023: Isuzu announces that its first all-electric production model, the 2025 Class 5 NRR EV, will be introduced to the U.S. and Canadian markets in the first half of 2024.

2023: Isuzu sets all-time records for sales of Isuzu-brand trucks and Isuzu parts.  

2024: Isuzu celebrates the 40th anniversary of Isuzu trucks in the U.S. market.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Click to listen highlighted text!