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  1. #1
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    Default GMC 4500 Medium Duty Ambulance Alternatives?

    With GM ending production of the Medium Duty Chassis, I am wondering what departments are looking at as alternatives? We had been purchasing International/Horton's until 2007 when we switched to GMC's. One of the reasons was cost. A nearby department's 2009 International Horton was $250K. Our 2009 GMC/Horton was 160K. We are hesitant to go to the E450. What are people thinking for a chassis for a large box ambulance?


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    International 4400 or Ford F-550

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    we have a 2003 gm 4500 with road rescue box....started spec'ing for a new unit this past summer when g.m. announced the end of the kodiak trucks....chassis's were still available, but we didnt want to go through a parts hassle a few years down the road....road rescue dealer brought a new delivery ambulance by for us to look at and test drive....it had a ford f-450 4x4 chassis with a kelderman air bag rear suspension...very, very impressive...we ended up ordering a ford from a local dealer and just received the chassis on monday....still havent got the bid out for a builder of the box.....waiting for the spec to be returned with changes......all our other medium duties are g.m.'s.....

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    The Freightliner rep at a recent dealer meeting I attended made comments relating to the fact that they were looking hard at trying to find a way to narrow the pricing gap between their Freightliner cab and the GM 5500. He made it clear that they were never going to be as low priced as the 5500 series, but were working to be substantially less than the IH competition and their current offering.
    Last edited by npfd801; 10-11-2009 at 08:04 PM. Reason: typos
    "Share your knowledge - it's a way to achieve immortality." - Stolen from Chase Sargent's Buddy to Boss program

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    The F-450 Type 1 has been suggested, but we are not sure about that. All of our boxes are 169" or 173". On a F-450 chassis that would be one long truck. I am not sure they even make boxes that big for the F-450. I have seen a Ford F-650 medium duty ambulance chassis, but there seems to be very few of those which might tell us something....

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    G4500 ... gm van style that they just put back on the market
    ~Big O~

    Tankers have wheels and carry water, Tenders are breaded and served with BBQ sauce

    (if you don't believe me Google it)

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    Quote Originally Posted by jsbuzz View Post
    The F-450 Type 1 has been suggested, but we are not sure about that. All of our boxes are 169" or 173". On a F-450 chassis that would be one long truck. I am not sure they even make boxes that big for the F-450. I have seen a Ford F-650 medium duty ambulance chassis, but there seems to be very few of those which might tell us something....
    we have a 450 with a 172 not as bad as you would think... spend the extra 5 grand and get the 4 wheel drive though and v10 save your self the headach and go anywhere
    ~Big O~

    Tankers have wheels and carry water, Tenders are breaded and served with BBQ sauce

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    If you don't mind me asking who manufactured your 172" box? Horton who has made our last 9 ambulances does not seem to offer a box that big on F-450. They max out at 157" I believe for the F-450. Would be in agreement that the V-10 and 4x4 would be worth it for only $5k more.

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    the ford road rescue was backed into our bay which houses the 5500 w/ultramedic box...the ford had identical size ultra box....it didnt take up any more space than the g.m. .........sorry i dont have any real measurements to offer, although i could get out a tape if needed.....

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    Forum Member MoosemanKBB527's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jsbuzz View Post
    If you don't mind me asking who manufactured your 172" box? Horton who has made our last 9 ambulances does not seem to offer a box that big on F-450. They max out at 157" I believe for the F-450. Would be in agreement that the V-10 and 4x4 would be worth it for only $5k more.

    its a medtech .. this is the only pic i have of it right now ... i get some more for you and get a length (your right i think it is a 150 somthing... i got mixed up with some other number we were talking about)

    Last edited by MoosemanKBB527; 10-11-2009 at 07:57 PM.
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    Upgrade to the F-550 and you can get a 173" box.

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    What MFG's are putting boxes on the 550?

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    Last edited by FireRescue61; 10-12-2009 at 05:14 PM.

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    When we ordered our last unit in late 2008 our horton dealer rep pretty much indicated that the only chassis they were building 623's on was Internationals and Freightliners. GMC 4500's were being linked to the 555 box and no mention of Ford Medium dutys.
    Last edited by jsbuzz; 10-12-2009 at 07:33 PM.

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    It says they build them on: International, Ford F-550, GMC, Sterling, and Freightliner chassis.

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    I also think Ford F-650.

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    Yeah, I see all the chassis options. It is interesting as to what the web says vs where the rep steers you towards. Especially a department like us that the rep knows we have been buying Hortons exclusively since 1994. With the GMC option gone now, we are going to have to look at the Ford 550 or 650. I wonder how they will compare in price to the GMC on the lower end and Internationals on the high end?

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    Hope to be some help! Not sure about price.

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    Quote Originally Posted by jsbuzz View Post
    With GM ending production of the Medium Duty Chassis, I am wondering what departments are looking at as alternatives? We had been purchasing International/Horton's until 2007 when we switched to GMC's. One of the reasons was cost. A nearby department's 2009 International Horton was $250K. Our 2009 GMC/Horton was 160K. We are hesitant to go to the E450. What are people thinking for a chassis for a large box ambulance?
    An Intl chassis is $90k more than a Kodiak? I don't thing so. Has to be something else major difference or you had a typo. You can buy a nices Fire Service IH4400 for less than $70k.

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    Not a typo. Our 2009 GMC 4500 Horton with a 555 169" box was $160,000
    Our 2004 International Horton with a 623 173" box was $190,000
    A neighboring town's 2010 International extended cab (roll-up doors on the exterior of the extended cab for additional storage) with a Horton 623 173" box was $250,000. That is about a 4% price increase per year for 6 years.

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