Western Star unveils the XD-25, a rugged 4900 designed for construction, off-road hauling

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Updated May 8, 2017

Western Star 4900 Xd 25 1

A year after announcing plans to add an Extreme Duty (XD) off-road package to its lineup, Western Star has unveiled the second member of the XD family.

Initially offered on the company’s flagship 6900 as the XD-40, during its its 50th anniversary celebration in Phoenix Western Star debuted the XD-25—a hulked up 4900 with 25 tons of capability. Western Star is targeting smaller, off-road construction, mining and quarry site hauling operations with the new configuration.

Western Star’s XD off-road suspensions offer maximum ground clearance, the company says. Using a double-slippered spring suspension, springs are controlled with heavy-duty track rods that eliminate the need for spring pins. That allows the spring packs to slide on wear pads without shock loading.

Its 3/8 x 3  &  1/2 x 10  &  3/4 inch double channel 120 KSI steel frame gives the truck a rigid backbone and great stability, but Western Star’s planetary gear sets give the truck the capability to haul massive loads while still keeping the chassis accessible for maintenance.

At the launch event, Western Star president Kelley Platt said the units are specifically designed to handle off-road jobs without compromising fuel economy and cycle time efficiency. “With a vocational truck, we have to be able to build exactly what the customer wants,” Platt says.

“It opens up another option for the rigid-mount, the traditional yellow iron, customer,” added Peter Arrigoni, vice president of Western Star, “and it’s probably the only market that we are the cheapest.”

Western Star 4900 Xd 25The XD-25 will be powered by a Detroit DD13 next model year, but XD-25s built this year can be equipped with either a DD13 or a Tier 3 Series 60.

The XD-25 is a torque monster, but is equipped with a high-speed planetary that gives it a top speed of about 65 miles per hour, making it highway capable. The Series 60 engine puts out about 505 hp and 1550 lbs.-ft. of torque—about 300 lbs.-ft. less than you’ll be able to squeeze from a DD13 at a lower RPM.

All that torque is traveling through an Allison 4500 RDS Automatic.

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There was ample power to blast up some fairly steep grades on my test drive and while this truck isn’t going to break any land-speed records, you’d be challenged to find a scenario where it can’t deliver the torque needed to get the job done.

The XD-25 features a 22,000 pound front axle and a 70,000 pound tandem axle in the rear with an 85,000 pound Chalmers suspension. John Tomlinson, XD and vocational sales manager for Western Star, says the Chalmers suspension has become a standard across the XD lineup because of the articulation it provides. A 23,000 pound front axle will be available in September when the DD13 becomes the standard engine.

For a truck of its size, the XD-25 has a shockingly tight turning radius—a feature that will be carried over to newer model XD-40s.

Arrigoni says the XD lineup was designed to be more truck-like for ease of maintenance. Butterfly hoods provide easier engine access and point-to-point wiring with an in-cab fuse panel simplify diagnostics. A quick disconnect system allows the entire fender and air cleaner to be easily removed in one piece for larger engine work. But while the process of engineering the truck may have been truck-like, the XD-25 is certainly a worksite warrior.

Rest of lineup gets new options

Western Star also announced several new options available to other trucks in its lineup:

♦  RollTek Seats, which feature side-impact airbags, are now available for Western Star 4700, 4800 and 4900 truck models. The RollTek seat system also tightens seat belts and compresses air suspension seats to the lowest position to prevent serious injuries to the driver in the event of a rollover.

♦  New sealed frame rail for Western Star 4700, 4800 and 4900 truck models, reduces corrosion on double channel and partial liner configurations. Sealed along the edges, the flexible water-tight seal prevents the intrusion of liquids and minimizes rust that might occur due to environmental factors and road de- icing products.

♦  Abrasion tape for exterior harnesses for Western Star 4700 and 5700 truck models helps improve durability. Each harness is wrapped in an abrasion-resistant seal and then fastened securely to the frame rails to prevent damage to the wires from debris, water and chafing.

♦  An aluminum diamond plate battery box that features cab access and increased ground clearance is available for the Western Star 4700.

♦  The Western Star 4800 and 4900 have an optional Detroit 23,000-lb front steer axle that is up to 40 lbs. lighter than other brands.

♦  An aftermarket-installed five-man crew cab for Western Star 4700, 4800, 4900 and 6900 truck models can now be spec’d with either two or four doors. A 12-dash inch backpack is also available for additional storage.

♦  The Western Star 5700 is now available in a truck configuration for expeditor and RV applications in a day cab or sleeper.