Sterling Trucks

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Sterling Trucks Corporation
Former type Subsidiary
Industry Automotive
Founded 1997
Defunct 2009
Headquarters Redford Township, Michigan, USA
Products Trucks
Owners Daimler AG
Parent Daimler Trucks North America LLC

Sterling Trucks Corporation, commonly designated Sterling, was an American truck manufacturer headquartered in Redford Township, Michigan, USA and a subsidiary of Daimler Trucks North America LLC, itself a wholly owned subsidiary of the German Daimler AG. It was originally the heavy truck division of Ford Motor Company, but was purchased and rebranded in 1997.[1] Headquartered in Detroit, Michigan, its conventional trucks were built in St. Thomas, Ontario. Sterling-brand trucks were sold in the United States, Canada, Mexico, Australia, and New Zealand.

On October 14, 2008, Daimler Trucks North America announced a plan to discontinue the Sterling product line in an effort to consolidate its North American truck manufacturing operations under the Freightliner and Western Star brands. The company stopped taking orders for new trucks in January 2009, the St. Thomas manufacturing plant closed in March 2009, and the Portland, Oregon, plant was closed in June, 2010.[2]


The Sterling name was originally used by an independent truck manufacturer, bought by the White Motor Co. in about 1953. It was retired two years later. Although technically the property of the White Motor Co., and conveyed to its successor, Volvo-White Motor Co., which evolved into Volvo Trucks North America, the trademark had lain dormant so long that there were no grounds for objection when Daimler-Benz subsidiary Freightliner—whose trucks were distributed by White from the 1950s through 1975—resurrected it to supplant the Ford blue oval on their HN80 ("AeroMax") family of trucks after the purchase.

Sterling built class 8 tractors, as well as a range of medium and heavy duty cab/chassis vehicles. With bodies added by third-party upfitters/body builders, these cab/chassis vehicles were used for freight distribution as well as heavy vocational uses, such as construction, snow plowing and refuse collection.

In the last few years of operation, the company also marketed light medium-duty cab/chassis vehicles manufactured by Mitsubishi Fuso (Sterling 360 models) and Dodge (Sterling Bullet models). These were typically outfitted with bodies suitable for use as lighter vocational trucks — those designed to perform jobs other than straight freight hauling — including fire trucks, garbage trucks, dump trucks, concrete mixers, tanker trucks, and snowplows.


Sterling HX9500 MBE
Sterling Bullet

Australian Catapillar Conversions CAT C12 to C13 Acert[edit]

A company from Newcastle 170km north of Sydney Freightways Logistics could be known as the first owners of an Australian converted 2004 CAT C12 Sterling LT9500 to a CAT C13 Acert. Glenn Lynch (Hexham) had done the work after the C12 damaged a camshaft, They had to do some changes to be able to fit it in. Its is believed to of taken around 3 weeks at a cost of $37,000AUD Its not for the faint hearted. (AUSTRALIAN MODELS ONLY)

Before conversion Sterling Lt9500 Yr04

Changes that had to be made

  • Steering box had to be rotated.
  • Turbo Pipes had to be made up.
  • Radiator Pipes & Radiator had to be changed to C15 Radiator (Ensure its a 2004 LT C15)
  • Air Con Condenser had to be changed to roof mounted Red Dot
  • Plus more that are been kept as trade secrets

On going problems

As the truck was fitted with an Eaton GEN2 Smartshift 18spd there is currently problems with the downshift under load, it is currently being worked on to find the problem by Glenn Lynch, Eaton Vehicle Group (AUST), Gilbert & Roach Kenworth.

Companies that done the work

  • Engine fitted & Changes by Glenn Lynch
  • Engine setup by Westrac
  • Gearbox By Eaton & Gilbert & Roach
  • Air Con (RED DOT) by MVM Autos
  • Parts By Newcastle Commercial Vehicles (NCV)
  • Stress By Freightways Logistics

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Daimler to Close Sterling Trucks Unit, Cut 3,500 Jobs". Retrieved 3 September 2009. 
  2. ^ "Daimler Trucks North America Plans Decisive Response to Changed Economic Environment". Retrieved 18 June 2009. 
  3. ^ "New Sterling 360 completes lineup". 2006-04-01. Retrieved 2012-03-01. 
  4. ^ "PickupTruck.Com - Sterling Bullet Debuts at NTEA Work Truck Show". Retrieved 2012-03-01. 

External links[edit]