International

International Harvester Company (IHC or IH) was a United States agricultural machinery, construction equipment, vehicle, commercial truck, and household and commercial products manufacturer. In 1902, J.P. Morgan merged the McCormick Harvesting Machine Company and Deering Harvester Company, along with three smaller agricultural equipment firms, to form International Harvester. International Harvester sold off its agricultural division in 1985 and renamed the company Navistar International Corporation in 1986. Case IH was formed when the agricultural division merged with J.I. Case.

The roots of International Harvester run to the 1830s, when Cyrus Hall McCormick, an inventor from Virginia, finalized his version of a horse-drawn reaper, which he field-demonstrated throughout 1831, and for which he received a patent in 1834. Together with his brother Leander J. McCormick (1819–1900), McCormick moved to Chicago in 1847 and started the McCormick Harvesting Machine Company. The McCormick reaper sold well, partially as a result of savvy and innovative business practices. Their products came onto the market just as the development of railroads offered wide distribution to distant market areas. He developed marketing and sales techniques, developing a vast network of trained salesmen able to demonstrate operation of the machines in the field.

McCormick died in 1884, with his company passing to his son, Cyrus McCormick, Jr. In 1902 the McCormick Harvesting Machine Company and Deering Harvester Company, along with three smaller agricultural equipment firms (Milwaukee; Plano; and Warder, Bushnell, and Glessner—manufacturers of Champion brand) merged to create the International Harvester Company. In 1919, the Parlin and Orendorff factory in Canton, Illinois was a leader in the plow manufacturing industry. International Harvester purchased the factory calling it the Canton Works; it continued production for many decades.

In 1926 IH's Farmall Works began production in a new plant in Rock Island, Illinois, built solely to produce the new Farmall tractor. By 1930, the 100,000th Farmall was produced. IH next set their sights on introducing a true 'general-purpose' tractor designed to satisfy the needs of the average US family farmer. The resulting 'letter' series of Raymond Loewy-designed Farmall tractors in 1939 proved a huge success, and IH enjoyed a sales lead in tractors and related equipment that continued through much of the 1940s and 1950s, despite stiff competition from Ford, John Deere and other tractor manufacturers. In 1946 IH acquired a World War II defense plant in Louisville, Kentucky, which was enlarged, expanded, and re-equipped for production of the Farmall A, B, and the new 340 tractors. In 1974, the 5 millionth IHC tractor was produced at the Rock Island Farmall plant.

Throughout the 1960s and 1970s, despite good sales, IH's profit margins remained slim. The continual adding of unrelated business lines created a somewhat unwieldy corporate organization, and the company found it difficult to focus on a primary business, be it agricultural equipment, construction equipment, or truck production. An overly conservative management, combined with a rigid policy of in-house promotions tended to stifle new management strategies as well as technical innovation. Products with increasingly ancient technology continued in production year after year despite their marginal addition to sales. Worse, IH now not only faced a threat of stiff competition in each of its main corporate businesses, but also had to contend with greatly increased production costs, primarily due to labor and government-imposed environmental and safety regulations.[1]

In 1979 IH named a new CEO, who was determined to improve profit margins and drastically cut a ballooning cost structure. Unprofitable model lines were terminated, and factory production curtailed. By the end of the year, IH profits were at their highest in 10 years, but cash reserves were still too low. Union members became increasingly irate over production cutbacks and other cost-cutting measures. In the spring and summer of 1979, IH began short-term planning for a strike that seemed inevitable. Then on November 1, IH announced figures showing that president and chairman Archie McCardell received a US$1.8 million (in 1979 values) bonus. McCardell sought overtime, work rule, and other changes from the UAW, which led to a strike on November 2, 1979.[2]

Soon after, the economy turned unfavorable, and IH faced a financial crisis. The strike lasted approximately six months. When it ended, IH had lost almost $600 million (in 1979 value; over $2 billion today).[3]

By 1981 the company's finances were at their lowest point ever. The strike, accompanied by the economy and internal corporate problems, had placed IH in a hole that had only a slim way out.[4] Things only got worse until 1984, when the bitter end came.

International Harvester, following long negotiations, agreed to sell its agricultural products division to Tenneco, Inc. on November 26, 1984. Tenneco had a subsidiary, J.I. Case, that manufactured tractors, but lacked the full line of farm implements that IH produced (combines, cotton pickers, tillage equipment etc.)

Following the merger, tractor production at Harvester's Rock Island, Illinois Farmall Works ceased in May 1985. Production of the new Case IH tractors moved to the J.I. Case Tractor Works in Racine, Wisconsin. Production of IH Axial-Flow combines continued at the East Moline, Illinois combine factory. Harvester's Memphis Works in Memphis, Tennessee was closed and cotton picker production was moved.

The truck and engine divisions remained, and in 1986 Harvester changed the corporate name to Navistar International Corporation (Harvester had sold the International Harvester name and the IH symbol to Tenneco Inc. as part of the sale of its agricultural products division). Navistar International Corporation continues to manufacture medium- and heavy-duty trucks, school buses, and engines under the International brand name.[3]

The International Harvester Agricultural Division was the biggest and best-known IH subsidiary. When IH sold the agricultural products division to Tenneco in 1985, the International Harvester name and "IH" logo, went with it.

One of the early products (besides the harvesting equipment that McCormick and Deering had been making prior to the merger) from the newly-created International Harvester Company was the Traction Truck: a truck frame manufactured by Morton Traction Truck Company (later bought by IHC) with an IHC engine installed.

From 1902, when IH was formed, to the early 1920s, the McCormick and Deering dealerships kept their original brands unique, with Mogul tractors sold at McCormick dealers, and Titan tractors at Deering dealerships, due to the still present competitiveness of the former rivals.

IH is often remembered as a maker of relatively successful and innovative "light" lines of vehicles, competing directly against the Big 3. The most common were pickup trucks. IH made light trucks from 1907 to 1975, beginning with the Model A Auto Wagon (sometimes called the "Auto Buggy").[12] Production commenced in in February 1907 at IH's McCormick Works in Chicago, although production was moved to Akron, Ohio in October that year.[12] Powered by a horizontally-opposed aircooled twin of around 15 hp (11 kW), it was a right hand drive model popular in rural areas for high ground clearance on the poor roads typical of the era. It featured a rear seat convertible to a carrier bed.[13] The Auto Wagon was renamed the Motor Truck in 1910, and was a forerunner to the successful modern pickup truck. They were called IHC until 1914, when the 'International' name was first applied.[12] The final light line truck was made on May 5, 1975.

IH also had early success with the "Auto Buggy", which started production in February 1907. In the mid-1940s, International released their K and KB series trucks, which were more simplistic than other trucks released in that era. This was followed by the L Series in 1949, which was replaced by the R Series in 1952, followed by the S line in 1955. In 1957, to celebrate IH's golden anniversary as a truck manufacturer, this was replaced by the new A line. 'A' stands for anniversary. With light modifications to its appearance but more serious changes under the shell (and a number of new names), this design continued in production until replaced by the 1100D in late 1969, which looked very similar to the Scout.[14]

One of the company's light-duty vehicles was the Travelall, which was similar in concept to the Chevrolet Suburban. The Travelette was a crew cab, available in 2 or 4 wheel drive. It was available starting in 1957, and was the first 6-passenger, 4-door truck of its time. The Scout, first introduced in 1961,[12] is a small two-door SUV, similar to a Jeep. In 1972 the Scout became the Scout II, and in 1974 Dana 44 axles, power steering and power disk brakes became standard. After the pickups and Travelall were discontinued in 1975, the Scout Traveler and Terra became available, both with a longer wheelbase than a standard Scout II.

IH would abandon sales of passenger vehicles in 1980 to concentrate on commercial trucks and school buses. Today the pickups, Travelalls, and Scouts are minor cult orphaned vehicles. All were available as rugged four-wheel drive off-road vehicles.

The Scout & Light Truck parts business was sold to Scout/Light Line Distributors, Inc. in 1991.

IH was an early manufacturer of medium/heavy duty trucks. Although based upon truck chassis, IH also became the leading manufacturer of the chassis portion of body-on-chassis conventional (type C) school buses. In 1962 IH offered the International Harvester Loadstar which became the premier medium-duty truck. In 1978 IH offered the International Harvester S-Series, which replaced the Loadstar in 1979.

With the truck and engine divisions remaining following the 1985 sale of the agricultural division, International Harvester Company changed their corporate name to Navistar International in 1986. Today Navistar International's subsidiary, International Truck and Engine Corporation, manufactures and markets trucks and engines under the International brand name.

The Power Stroke diesel engine, which is a trade name of Ford Motor Company, is manufactured by International Truck and Engine Corporation in Melrose Park, IL., for use in Ford heavy-duty trucks, vans and SUVs.

IH manufactured heavy vehicles for military use, including the 1942 M5 Tractor and 2.5-ton trucks for the US Navy & Marines.

In early 1951, the United States Army through the Springfield Armory contracted International Harvester to produce M1 Garand rifles, and from 1953 to 1956 produced 337,623 rifles in total, according to the Army Ordnance Department.

International also made 2½- and 5-ton 4×4 and 6×6 trucks for the Australian Army from 1963 to 1973. Known as the Mk3, Mk4 and F1 they saw service until the late 1980s.[15]

Loadstar is a series of medium-duty trucks made by International Harvester from 1962 to 1979. It was primarily used for local delivery, including school buses and fire engines. It was also used extensively in the agricultural and construction industries.

The International R series replaced the L-Series in 1953. It was mostly a facelift of the light and medium models, but also a remarkable set of changes. The busy front style seen on L series was cleanly and easily redesigned to become the R line. In place of the ornate grille of the L line was a simple retangular opening with a tapered bar running across the center, and the IH "man on a tractor" logo planted firmly and obviously in the center. The heavy duty models (R-185 and higher) were changed only slightly in appearance, in that four of the seven vertical bars in the upper grille were removed.

There were actually few changes in the R line, other than facelifts. Of course, there was a wide range of engines, 29 to be precise, which were available. Both Cummins and Buda Diesels were now offered in the RD-190 and RD-200 Series, whereas only Cummins had been available, and even then only in models larger than the 190/200 Series.

A new Black Diamond 282 engine became the standard powerplant for the R-180, RC-180 and RF-170 models, and was optional in the R-175 Roadliner tractor. The new engine had a shorter stroke, a chrome alloy cylinder block, and a higher lift camshaft. It also featured slow rotating Stellite-faced exhaust valves and chromed top piston rings. A new "visible flow" carburetor had a fast idle cam that speeded engine warm up.

The three sizes of Super Red Diamond engines (372, 406, and 450 cid) had improved combustion chambers, redesigned valve ports, rotating exhaust valves with more durable seats and improved rings. The Super Blue Diamond (269 cid) had a new cylinder head with improved valve ports and coolant passages, altered ignition timing for the new 6.5:1 compression ratio, aluminum-alloy pistons, and "visible flow" carburetor.

The little Silver Diamonds (220 and 240 cid) engines featured rotating valves and improved carburetor, plus a ceramic fuel filter and hotter spark plugs. LPG engines, which had previously been offered only in L-185 and larger models, were available in trucks as light as the R-150 in the new line.

There were also totally new trucks available at the IHC dealers in 1953. One was the Tilto Cab R-195 and R-205 with cab-over-engine design. However, only a few units were ever built by Hendrickson. The R-195 had a 24,000 lbs GVW, used a Red Diamond 406 engine, 14 inch clutch, overdrive or direct drive (in top gear) five speed transmission, and Eaton single reduction rear axle. The R-205 was similar, but featured the Red Diamond 450 engine, heavier transmission and axles, and larger brakes. The standard tire size for both models was 10.00x20 14 ply.

Another vehicle which was not only new to the lineup but practically a new concept was the Fageol van. Known earlier as the "Manhattan Express", it was a marriage of a semi-trailer and a truck chassis, with the driver's compartment in the front part of the trailer cavity.

All wheel drive trucks were offered in International's line as a factory option for the first time in 1953. Previously any such modification would have been made by third parties, or perhaps IHC's own truck modification centers at Fort Wayne, Indiana or Springfield, Ohio. It was a small beginning: only the R-140 4x4 and the R-160 4x4 were offered initially, but there were more to come.

In the light pickup truck arena, the new R-110 pickup was a handsome little rig. The clean lines of the grille, hood and front fenders were simple, but pleasing. Exterior chrome plating was used only sparsely, on the identifying logos and on the door handles, but the design did not need chrome to look good. The 115 in wheelbase model featured a 6.5 foot pickup box, and cost $ 1,384.00.

For 1954, IHC introduced the new R-100, which looked exactly as the R-110, but cost US$ 60 less, and carried some improvements. including a bit more horsepower, improved gear ratios, larger brakes, more flexible springs. With a 4,200 lbs GVW (4,600 lbs on R-102) riding a 115 in wheelbase, the power came from a Silver Diamond 220 cid (3.6L), in-line 6 cylinder engine with overhead valves, 104 hp and a 7:1 compression ratio (up from 100 hp and 6.5:1 on the R-110), driving a 3-speed transmission and a semi-floating rear axle. By mid '54 it could also be had with an overdrive transmission which provided a 30% reduction in engine speed at 60 miles per hour, or with a torque converter fully automatic transmission (basically a GM sourced 3-speed Hydramatic). Power steering also became an option. Tire size was 6.00x16 6 ply.

The International Harvester S-Series was a medium-duty truck line manufactured by International Harvester. The S-Series was first introduced in mid-1977 as a replacement for the International Harvester Fleetstar. In 1979, other versions of the S-Series were introduced as the successor to the Loadstar. Like the Loadstar, the S-Series were straight trucks commonly used for local delivery; the versions replacing the Fleetstar were semi-tractors or severe-service straight trucks. Additionally, the S-Series (and its replacement, the 3800) proved popular in the school bus industry. The S-Series was the last product line designed from the ground up from International Harvester; it was produced in its original form until the end of the 1980s. Production of the second-generation S-Series ended in 2001.

The origins of the S-Series nameplate date to 1955, when International Harvester introduced a successor to the R-Series. This S-Series was available primarily as light-duty (pickup) and medium-duty trucks. Production of the light duty S-Series ended in 1957, when it was replaced by the A-series.[1]

In 1987, to reflect the corporate change from International Harvester to Navistar International, the S-Series received new badging. The IHC logo seen on the steering wheel was replaced by the Navistar diamond logo. On the outside, the International name was moved from the top to the bottom of the grille. Instead of matching the grille color, all S-Series trucks wore a red International badge.

Most of the components were carried over into an updated line of medium duty trucks (the straight trucks were re-branded International 4000 Series, while the tractors became the International 8000 Series) with a redesigned hood and interior in 1989. These products underwent interior updates in 1992 and 1995, remaining in production until the end of the 2001 model year.

International K and L series were common on Australian roads but it was the legendary International R190 Series that would go on to become known as Australia’s most remembered International. The R190, introduced in the mid 1950s, was considered to be the biggest and the best on Australia’s roads. Its arrival would establish International as a reliable and efficient supplier of both highway and off-road trucks. The R190’s were powered by petrol engines and this gave them the lead in speed as diesel engines of the day were still slow to power. Some later models were fitted with diesel engines as an option. Two of the most popular models were the petrol RF-195 and the diesel RDF-195. The mighty R190 was just as much at home in roadtrain applications on gruelling Northern Territory runs as it was on the Hume Highway in Victoria. One of the few drawbacks of the R190 was the heat inside the cab and many old timers still today refer to them affectionately as “hot boxes”. The bigger and more powerful R200 Series found their niche in the heavier tipping and quarrying industries.

The International 3070 series, especially de signed for long distance and heavy haulage applications was very popular in Australia. Powered by 320 hp Cummins 903 engines, all four models in the series were cabover trucks. The 3070 range featured a flat, one piece windshield and International’s simple tilt system for pushing the cab out of the way to get at the engine. Likewise, the International-owned Atkinson range was also popular in Australia, particularly with those operators who required larger, more powerful engines in special applications. In general, the Atkinson was more expensive to purchase than many of its competitors and this held it back in more conventional applications to some degree. In 1992 International Australia was taken over by European truck builders Iveco which belongs to the Fiat group, manufacturers of a full range of commercial vehicles. International still hold a large share of the Australian truck market and the new 525 hp Transtar 4700 Series is gaining a reputation for handling the tough stuff in rugged applications.

If anyone in Australia was asked who Charles Kingsford Smith was, they would be quick tell you of the many flying exploits of Australia’s most famous aviator; exploits that are well remembered and honoured all over the country. Very few people are aware that Kingsford Smith was also one of Australia’s road transport pioneers. Having first set up a wool carrying business in Carnarvon, WA, with a 30-hundredweight International truck in 1923, he soon formed a partnership with fellow pilot Keith Anderson and founded the Gascoyne Transport Company in the Gascoyne area of Western Australia.

For two years they battled the extremes of heat, dust and isolation, over rutted tracks, unmade roads and flooded rivers, laying the groundwork for what would later become one of the greatest road transport enterprises Australia would ever see. The Gascoyne Transport Company later became Gascoyne Trading and changed hands several times over the many years since. Much of remote and rural Australia, including the Pilbara, the Kimberleys and the Northern Territory were opened up by Gascoyne Trading thanks to a venture started by a man called Smithy.

Between 1933 and 1935, Smithy, later Sir Charles Kingsford Smith, was also a partner in the company of Marks Motor Construction Ltd, based in Sydney. It was this firm that produced the unusual Southern Cross motor car featuring a locally produced four cylinder engine and a one-piece laminated timber frame. Sir Charles Kingsford Smith was tragically killed in an air crash in 1935 and the project floundered after producing only four vehicles.

Neil Mansell Transport is today renowned the world over for the monstrous rig shifts they undertake across the rugged and inhospitable interior of Australia. Neil started his trucking career in the late 1950s when he found employment carting general freight in an R190 International. By the early 1960s he, along with a myriad of others, subcontracted to the fledging oil exploration industry doing rig shifts for the Compass Oilfield Trucking. Later that decade, with his wife Fay, Neil decided to set up his own company. Years of driving on rugged unmade roads and cross country through the outback had given him a level of local knowledge that few others could compete with. In the early days Fay stayed home and ran the business while Neil worked on the shifts for up to three months at a time without returning home. In the early days, a grader was often sent out in front of the trucks to ensure that they would get through to areas where cars rarely travelled.

The Whitehorse story actually begins when International Harvester field representative, Kelvin Griffith, decided he wanted to establish his own dealership. Ted McCormack, then manager of International Harvester in Victoria, had earlier told Kelvin that each morning he looked out of his windows at his home in Mont Albert, then a fertile or chard area, he could see too many of the oppositions’ tractors working in the fields.

Kelvin saw this for the opportunity that it was, and decided to sell International tractors in Melbourne’s eastern rural area. Kelvin bought a second-hand bus and set it up on a vacant block on the corner of Whitehorse and Springvale Roads in Nunawading. then, very much a bush suburb. He leased the property from the Vacuum Oil Company, which was later to become Mobil.

As is often the case with progress and initiative, the bus was not considered to be a good enough registered office for the bureaucrats at the Corporate Affairs Office. The first sign, reading Whitehorse Truck and Tractor Service - Registered Office was hung in 1955. on a pigeon club shed, across the road from the site.

As urban development spread to outlying Melbourne, the area soon changed from the rural out post it once was. Tractors were not much in demand and the company switched its focus to International Trucks. By the mid 1970s Whitehorse was Australia’s largest International truck dealer and branches were subsequently established in other areas. In 1984, the company changed its name to Whitehorse Truck Centre, to better describe the company’s truck focus. Today, the huge Whitehorse Truck Centre organisation are dealers for International, Scania, Hino and Daihatsu. In 40 short years, they have come a long from the time they did their business in an old bus and the Nunawading Pigeon Club.

Many people have fond memories and a tall tale to tell about Roy Bell and his boxing tent team that travelled the outback roads of Australia during the 1930s, ‘40s ‘50s and ‘60s on the show circuit. Roy Bell designed and built what is believed to be the first “all steel” enclosed trailer in Australia. Hauled behind a variety of International trucks over the years, the huge vehicle was the ultimate in trailers. Roy and his wife slept in a small caravan-like apartment at the front of the trailer, the fighters, up to ten at a time, slept in a bunked compartment in the middle of the trailer and a final compartment at the rear carried the supplies, boxing tent and all their equipment.

Major General T.F. Tate of the Australian Army worked closely with Alan Tweedale of the International Harvester Company in the 1950s and 60s to produce the specification for the first successful 4x4 Australian Army truck. Under recommendation from the Department of Supply’s Military Vehicle Advisory Committee International built the vehicle. It was of world standard and in fact formed the basis of International’s popular ACCO range of civilian vehicles designed and manufactured in Australia. Powered by either the International V345 177 bhp petrol engine or a Perkins 6.354 diesel, the first twin steer ACCO Fl 840TS were released onto the civilian market in 1968.

By the mid 1930s the average size of trucks had risen considerably; three to five-tonners were a common sight, and by then had taken over most of the freight previously delivered by river to outlying settlements and communities. The light American Internationals were making inroads into the heavier freight market, although this was quickly superseded after the war with the KB model. Many operators of Internationals chose to repower their trucks with the reliable and more powerful Gardner diesel engines. The Gardners were considered to be the Rolls Royce of diesel engines in those days.

The onset of WW2 effectively cut off the supply of British marques to Australia. Most vehicles imported from the 1940s onwards were of American or Canadian origin. Thousands of vehicles and heavy transports arrived in Australia with the military and the few imported civilian vehicles were requisitioned for use in the Australian Services. After the disastrous attack on Pearl Harbour Australia again changed its tack and the only vehicles that were brought into Australia were on a “Lend Lease” arrangement. These were usually the KS5 four-ton International or the Chevrolet 1500 series three-tonner.

Similarly, the smaller International trucks, such as the C-Line 80, were fitted with Cummins diesel engines, although these were generally the smaller six-cylinder 160 Cummins.

However, the arrival of two revolutionary American trucks would alter the course of road transport in Australia yet again. As the mid 1950s approached the Internationals and Macks were gaining a reputation for being faster and more versatile than the British marques. By the 1960s Mack and International were a common sight all around Australia with the classic B Model Mack and the International R190 Series considered to be the “milemakers” for the day and few of Australia’s older transport companies don’t owe an important part of their development to these mighty “big rigs”. In the more populous states they were competing with Atkinsons, ERFs, Scammells and Mercedes Benz. In the rugged outback regions of Northern Queensland, the northern regions of Western Australia and in the Northern Territory their widespread acceptance marked the end of the Foden’s dominance.

International K and L series were common on Australian roads but it was the legendary International R190 Series that would go on to become known as Australia’s most remembered International. The R190, introduced in the mid 1950s, was considered to be the biggest and the best on Australia’s roads. Its arrival would establish International as a reliable and efficient supplier of both highway and off-road trucks. The R190’s were powered by petrol engines and this gave them the lead in speed as diesel engines of the day were still slow to power. Some later models were fitted with diesel engines as an option. Two of the most popular models were the petrol RF-195 and the diesel RDF-195. The mighty R190 was just as much at home in roadtrain applications on gruelling Northern Territory runs as it was on the Hume Highway in Victoria. One of the few drawbacks of the R190 was the heat inside the cab and many old timers still today refer to them affectionately as “hot boxes”. The bigger and more powerful R200 Series found their niche in the heavier tipping and quarrying industries.

The International 3070 series, especially de signed for long distance and heavy haulage applications was very popular in Australia. Powered by 320 hp Cummins 903 engines, all four models in the series were cabover trucks. The 3070 range featured a flat, one piece windshield and International’s simple tilt system for pushing the cab out of the way to get at the engine. Likewise, the International-owned Atkinson range was also popular in Australia, particularly with those operators who required larger, more powerful engines in special applications. In general, the Atkinson was more expensive to purchase than many of its competitors and this held it back in more conventional applications to some degree. In 1992 International Australia was taken over by European truck builders Iveco which belongs to the Fiat group, manufacturers of a full range of commercial vehicles. International still hold a large share of the Australian truck market and the new 525 hp Transtar 4700 Series is gaining a reputation for handling the tough stuff in rugged applications.

In 1937 the first big step was taken to establish comprehensive manufacturing facilities in Australia.
The land on which the factory was built was purchased on Corio Bay, North Shore, Geelong, Victoria.

After a few months of implement operation the company, due to war, turned its operations to making and assembling military items.
During this period, motor trucks, gas masks, torpedo bombers, service rifles, howitzers, bren guns and machine gun carriers were manufactured.

After the war, ‘the Company realised that Australia was on the brink of an era of gigantic development, that here was a country with a vast manufacturing potential, its resources hardly tapped’.

The first International Motor Trucks were assembled on a temporary assembly line in a temporary manufacturing plant at the Company’s Australian headquarters in South Melbourne.

This new Australian made Motor Truck quickly gained acceptance throughout Australia’s road transport industry.
The Dandenong Works was opened in 1952.

Due to the trucks popularity, expansion to the works became necessary in 1955.  Additional buildings and equipment were added, the most noteworthy part of the expansion programme being the motor truck cab plant where sheet metal is transformed into motor truck cabins by modern day assembly line methods.
The new facilities also incorporated new machines tools and fixtures, permitting almost twice the previous output.

During the 1950’s International Harvester made great strides in the construction equipment field and developed giant earth moving tractors, scrapers, off highway motor trucks and various machines required for the development of the land throughout Australasia.

In 1955 the company expanded its earthmoving and construction equipment manufacturing facilities in Australia to build bulldozers, bull graders and components for allied equipment.

By July 1958 the company had purchased the manufacturing facilities of an engineering company at Port Melbourne, Victoria, Australia, to further expand the manufacture in Australia of its line of construction and earthmoving equipment. International Harvester then transferred production of major earth moving equipment built in Geelong to this venue also adding new machines to its range.
Testing of the farm machines was actually done in the fields of many Australian States and to ensure local conditions were taken into account.
By the conclusion of the War, International Harvester engineering group, in addition to adapting imported machinery for local use had entirely designed a wide range of machines for use in South East Asia.
“Some of the most notable achievements of the group included the design of a local header harvester (a machine unique to Australia and New Zealand harvesting methods), scarifier and cultivating drill.

The strength of the engineering plant was enlarged by the addition of a motor truck testing staff. The motor truck engines were tested at Geelong, with other components of the trucks tested in the actual operating conditions on the road. Later, the motor truck engineering staff moved to Dandenong.
The main work of the early motor truck testing staff was confined to merely adapting imported trucks to local conditions. Early in the 1950’s the motor truck group joined forces with the Australian Government for the development of a vehicle for use by the Australian Army. This was the first truck completely designed in Australia.

The design concept of this army truck was used to design the first commercial truck to be completely designed and manufactured in Australia. This was to become known as the ACCO series.

The engineering staff was further enhanced by the establishment of another engineering group concentrating on the Construction equipment line.
When the company purchased its Port Melbourne Works in 1958, this group were housed there.

It soon became obvious that the company needed a Proving Ground to test all its products, so approximately 1,161 hectares (2,5556 acres) were purchased at Wormbete near Anglesea, Victoria, in 1961.

Work commenced quickly on the construction of many testing courses within the Proving Ground.
Anglesea proving Ground is the largest automotive proving grounds in Australia, containing rigorous test courses notably, a truck chassis twist course, a motor truck test loop, a loader test area, just to name a few.

Soon afterwards (early 1962) all engineering staff were moved into the Product Engineering Centre.  
Dandenong and Port Melbourne Works used a resident engineering group. By 1969 the strength of the engineering department had grown to well over 200.

This staff were responsible for the development of a vast range of trucks, tractors, farm, construction and industrial equipment.