FUSO Celebrates 50 Years of the Canter in Australia

Created: 28.May 2021

Mitsubishi Fuso Truck and Bus Corporation (MFTBC) is pleased to announce the 50th anniversary of the Canter light-duty truck in Australia.

The light-duty truck first reached Australian shores in 1971. At the time of the launch, the Canter was positioned as an  economic but tough “all-rounder” that would serve a variety of customer needs. The original product manufactured for Australia delivered 95 hp at 3.5 tons. Six years after the initial release, a wide-cab variant joined the lineup, a welcome addition for customers of larger build. Later in 1989, a 4x4 model was introduced, enjoying immediate success among Australian customers such as the local firefighting forces who found it to be the perfect combination of ruggedness and agility. At one point in time, the largest fleet of 4x4 Canters in the world served the New South Wales Fire Service. 

After half a century and over 72,700 units sold, the Canter has now become a household name in Australia. The current model for the Australian market comes in a range of GVWs, from 3.5 to 8.5 tonnes, and various body configurations that are fitted by a local body builder. The product comes standard with top-of-the-line safety features such as the Advanced Emergency Braking System (AEBS), the Electronic Stability Program (ESP), and the Lane Departure Warning System (LDWS). All Canters for Australia are shipped as BU vehicles from the MFTBC plant in Kawasaki,  Japan, and distributed by Daimler Truck and Bus Australia (DTBA; headquarters: Victoria, Australia; President and CEO: Daniel Whitehead). DTBA is now turning a new chapter in the history of the Canter with the market introduction of the all-electric eCanter truck, scheduled to run in customer hands from later this year. 

The legacy of the Canter dates back to March 1963, when the first Canter T720 rolled off the production line in Japan. The model’s naming was inspired by the graceful gait of a horse – an image that still echoes in the latest version’s lithe but powerful design. Since the sixties, the iconic light-duty truck has reached over 170 markets around the world, and has been a segment leader in locations as diverse as Indonesia, Taiwan, and Peru. It is currently the best selling Daimler Truck model in Australia,
and in Europe, where the lineup is exclusive to the Canter and eCanter, the FUSO brand recorded in 2020 a share of 26% among trucks up to 10 tons.