monster ute is powerful brute

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    Monster ute is powerful brute
    Patrick Whiteley

    The world's largest ute may be thundering Down Under.

    The International CXT is the ultimate big boys' toy, weighing 14.7 tonnes, standing 2.7m high and stretching to a length of 6.5m.
    The standard model costs $123,000 and goes up to $156,000. When you are paying this type of money you are not going to worry about the vehicle's ridiculous fuel bill. This baby guzzles 40 litres of diesel per 100km. That means a round trip from Penrith to Sydney costs $56 in fuel.

    International unveiled the CXT last month in Texas and is already eyeing ute-crazy Aussies.

    A spokesman says the company is aware of our passion for utes and is looking at exporting the monster here. "We are considering right-hand-drive models. I know you Aussies love your utes and there is nothing like this one." So who would use a ute like this?

    There are many cashed-up builders in Sydney who have reaped huge profits from the housing boom.

    Such a ute would turn heads at any construction site. Owners of luxury boats who need serious pulling power would also be tempted. This beast hauls four times the payload of consumer utes.

    The all-wheel-drive vehicle uses air brakes and offers towing, dumping and tilt-bed capability. The cabin features a roomy interior with a crew cab design that seats five.

    It can be customised to include a variety of colours, air seats and can also be fitted with flat-screen TVs.

    It can have a leather interior with woodgrain trim, reclining captain chairs, a fold-down bench that can be used as a bed and an overhead compartment with drop-down DVD. Another option is a satellite radio system and rear-mounted camera for better visibility behind.

    The CXT features the International DT 466 diesel engine with 220hp and 732Nm of torque. It has an electronically-controlled turbocharger and four valves per cylinder.

    Its real appeal will be to people wanting to make a big, big statement.

    International's marketing chief Rob Swim says. "The International CXT is a truck for businesses that want to promote themselves as much as perform.

    "It is as much a statement of success as it is performance."

    International expects to sell 100 CXTs this year and 500 next year and hopes the monster ute will rival the Hummer, which has found a niche market among the fashionable.

    Ute tragic Adam Hedgecoe operates a website, Utes 'n Stuff, and was blown away by the CXT.

    "First impression could be summed up by saying that's just getting silly," he says. "That thing is just a semi without a trailer. I only hope they've changed the back suspension a little. Don't know how it would go over here but I could guess at a few uses ... it would be a pretty trendy option for those people that tow massive horse trailers."

    Hedgecoe reckons it will work well for promotions.

    "If you had a bucket of cash and wanted a pretty wicked head turner, a CXT would have to beat the pants off your average Ferrari," he says.

    "Would be awesome to do it up as a B&S ute with antennas, bull bar, sleeper cab, big chunky tyres, maybe a big bug reflector on the front with something like 'I'm compensating' on it."

    The Daily Telegraph


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