ANAHEIM, CA - Isuzu Commercial Truck of America, Inc., distributor of low-cab-forward trucks, announced at the American Truck Dealers (ATD) 2010 Convention & Expo in Orlando, FL, that Spartan Motors, Inc., a manufacturer of specialty chassis and vehicles, was selected to assemble gasoline-powered Isuzu N-Series trucks.

Spartan will assemble all gasoline-engine models of the Isuzu N-Series chassis to Isuzu's specifications at one of its assembly facilities, beginning in the second quarter 2011. The powertrain will employ a General Motors 6.0L V-8 gasoline engine and Hydra-Matic 6-speed transmission.

Gasoline-powered N-Series trucks had been assembled by GM at its plant in Janesville, Wisconsin, until the plant ceased operations in 2009. Last month, Isuzu Commercial Truck of America announced that an agreement had been reached with GM for the supply of transmissions and gasoline engines used for gas-powered Isuzu NPR and NPR-HD trucks in both single and Crewcab models, and that these vehicles would be reintroduced for the 2012 model-year. The company also announced that it would soon be announcing the new assembler of the popular gas-engine low-cab-forward trucks.

Shaun Skinner, executive vice president and general manager of Isuzu Commercial Truck of America, said, "We are excited to have Spartan, one of the industry's most respected builders of high-quality custom chassis, help reintroduce our line of gasoline-powered N-Series trucks. Together, we will position ICTA's dealer body to once again offer the broadest range of low-cab-forward solutions in the industry."

"I expect this to be the beginning of a long-term relationship with a world leading diesel engine and commercial vehicle organization," said John Sztykiel, president and chief executive officer of Spartan Motors. "This relationship with the Isuzu group enhances Spartan's ability to leverage our capacity and our engineering and manufacturing expertise, which is critical as the landscape for the commercial vehicle market is transformed by economic, environmental and regulatory forces."

ICTA also announced the development of a revolutionary next-generation commercial van combining a body designed by Spartan's Utilimaster Corporation subsidiary with Isuzu's NPR diesel chassis. Full production of the new walk-in van is expected to begin in the second half of 2011.