International Industria Automotiva da America do Sul Ldta. (IIAA), the South American subsidiary of Navistar International Corp., has begun commercial-truck production at the Navistar Industrial Complex, the company’s manufacturing facility in Canoas, Rio Grande Do Sul, Brazil. The new truck manufacturing line will have capacity for 5,000 trucks per year and potential for added expansion as demand grows, according to the OEM.

The 40,000-square-meter facility already serves as a parts distribution center and produces diesel engines for MWM-International, which manufactures diesel engines for commercial-vehicle, agricultural, industrial and marine applications in Latin America and other global markets..

 “We’re seeing great success in Brazil with our MWM engine business and we remain committed to the future in Brazil as we begin our truck manufacturing operations in Canoas,” said Eric Tech, president, Navistar Global Truck and Engine. “Our business in Brazil has served as a great model for our global growth efforts. Our ongoing investment in the Brazilian truck market—one of the largest commercial truck markets in the world—is a logical next step in our strategy.”

During the last three years, Navistar said it has invested more than $200-million (US) in Brazil on a number of important strategic initiatives, including manufacturing operations, research and development, an emissions change from EURO-III to EURO-V standards and new product launches for the Brazilian truck market. By leveraging the existing facility in Canoas, Navistar was able to avoid a significant investment required by a greenfield project.

“Our Brazilian business is having a strong year and their success is an important part of the great progress we’re making in our company’s turnaround strategy,” Tech added. “While we remain focused on improving our core North American business, we continue to look for smart, strategic ways to invest in select global markets and our investment in Brazil is just one example of that approach.”