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March 29, 2012

Kenworth Right-Sizes New Model

The number says it all. Kenworth's new and best-kept-secret, the T680, falls midway between the T660 and the year-ago launched T700. The 660 has the traditional narrow cab at 75 inches, while the T700 has the 90-inch cab out to the full width of the regulation. The T680 falls squarely in the middle with an 82.5-inch cab.

The T680 was launched at the recent Mid America Trucking Show. Sister brand Peterbilt shares the basic cab construction in its model 579, also launched at the show. Both are highly tooled stamped aluminum with complex panels joined by Henrob fasteners to create a rigid aluminum cab structure. The rivets are blind and no heads stand out on the smooth cab surface except at the rear corners to aid repair there. In this, the T680 falls between the T660 with its largely exposed Huck-bolt rivets and the smooth aerospace bonded structure that is underneath the sleek panels of the T700.