When Class 3-5 truck maker Isuzu Commercial Truck of North America rolled out its 2008 N Series truck models this spring, the company also announced its intention to introduce a new service for its customers-the availability of an easy-to-read vehicle “health report.” The new report, which will be available through the dealer network, is designed to provide information about the engine, emissions, fuel economy, PTO hours and driver operating habits to help customers reduce costs, improve performance and manage risk.
According to Bill Kaucky, service readiness engineer, Isuzu is completing design work now on an interface to the electronic data record module (DRM) already on all 2007-compliant engines, which will enable the downloading of information from the DRM and the preparation of the new report for customers. “The work is almost complete now,” Kaucky notes. “Dealers should have it available later this year through their existing on-line service tool, the Isuzu Diagnostic Service System (IDSS).”
The “health report” offering represents the first step toward bringing a full-fledged telematics solution to the U.S. marketplace, according to Dan Cutler, executive director of product development for Isuzu Commercial Truck of North America.
“Japan has a telematics solution called Mimamori that we plan to introduce to U.S. fleets a year or two down the road,” says Cutler. “While real-time, satellite-based solutions are more common in heavy-duty fleets, their use is still relatively new to the medium-duty market, so we are taking it a step at a time. Our hope is that the new report will give customers the opportunity to experience for themselves the benefits of access to better information about their vehicle assets.”