Extreme Trucks: The International XT April 03, 2014

So, we've already covered the Mercedes-Benz Unimog. That's a pretty sweet and rugged medium-duty truck for the street, but surely you must be thinking, "Well, if Germany can produce THAT, what kind of craziness does America build?" The answer to your question is the International XT - or Extreme Truck. [caption id="" align="alignnone" width="800"]File:International CXT.jpg Photo Credit: Wikipedia[/caption] Like the Unimog, the International XT comes in a variety of flavors - three, to be precise. First up is the International CXT, or Commercial Extreme Truck. This thing is big. Really big. The CXT comes in at 21.5 feet long, 9 feet tall, and has a curb weight of 14,500 pounds. That's the rough equivalent of two H1 Hummers... and you thought those were huge. These are powered by a Navistar 7.6 liter inline 6 cylinder diesel engine that produces north of 800 foot-pounds of torque. Oh, and if you want it, you can even get one with a dumping bed: [caption id="" align="alignnone" width="800"]File:International CXT pickup.jpg Photo Credit: Bruce Fingerhood, Flickr.[/caption] The CXT was between $93,000 and $115,000 USD, so it's like they say: you have to pay to play. Next up is the RXT - Recreational Extreme Truck. Unlike their CXT cousins, the RXT is rear-wheel drive only. It's powered by a Navistar V8 diesel engine, the VT365. You might know it by another name: the Ford Power Stroke 6.0 liter, commonly found in Ford vans and heavy duty pickup trucks. It makes 560 foot-pounds of torque, so while it might not be as radical as the CXT, it's still plenty of power to pull your boat, horses, or almost anything else you could put behind it.   [caption id="" align="alignnone" width="708"] RXT, left. CXT, right.
Photo Credit: Yenra[/caption] The last variant is, arguably, the coolest and definitely the most unique of the XT family of Extreme Trucks, the MXT - Military Extreme Truck. This thing is so extreme, it was originally envisioned purely as a concept vehicle, but response at the 2005 Chicago Auto Show was so positive that International decided to produce them in 2007. It had custom bodywork that separated it from its other XT siblings, with a custom bed (the others are sourced from Ford Super Duty pickup trucks), a modified chassis that put the body closer to the ground, and headlights and a grille from other trucks in the International/Navistar lineup. The same VT365 diesel V8 powers the MXT, but it's slightly lighter than the RXT, so it's rated at 13-15 miles per gallon. Oh, they also made a military exclusive version called the MXT-MV. It doesn't get any more extreme than military demands. [caption id="" align="alignnone" width="640"]File:Army mxt.jpg Photo Credit: Gavin Robinson, Flickr[/caption] "What about a luxury version? The Unimog has an uber luxury version!" International was thinking the same thing when they built the Project XT concept truck. It was similar to the RXT, but had many more luxurious features, including things like dual skylights, a DVD player, a spoiler, mood lighting, and even a mini fridge. Come on, a mini fridge? That's limousine luxury right there. Unfortunately, the Project XT never saw the light of day before the whole XT line of pickups was shelved in 2008, after lackluster sales figures. The limited production run didn't stop a whole host of notable people from owning these Extreme Trucks. Among them are actor Ashton Kutcher, basketball superstar Shaquille O'Neal, professional boxer Roy Jones, Jr. and others. Even Jay Leno, famed comedian and world-renowned car collector, is said to have taken a test drive. If it's extreme enough for Jay Leno to investigate, it's definitely worthy of the name. What do you think of these super trucks? Cool? Ridiculous? Over the top? Share your thoughts in the comments!

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