A short look back: A fitting tribute for the D250
When it comes to paying tribute to one of the original Cummins-powered RAM D250s, it's go big or go home.
On June 15, 2019, Cummins celebrated its historic centennial birthday with the grand reopening of the company's Corporate Office Building (COB) in its global headquarters of Columbus, Ind. A small town with big city recognition, the city is ranked sixth in the United States for architecture design by The American Institute of Architects (AIA).
Read: "Our newly renovated COB takes a short look back and a long look forward for the modern workplace"
A small midwestern town nestled just south of Indiana's capital city of Indianapolis is hardly the place you would expect these kinds of accolades, and yet the COB is one of the hallmark buildings recognized in the AIA's designation. Constructed in 1984 by world renowned architect, Kevin Roche, the building was designed around Columbus' historic Cerealine building, a former cereal mill.
The Cerealine was purchased in 1918 and used as the first official workspace for the founding members of Cummins, J.I. Irwin and Clessie Cummins. The COB is now a focal point of downtown Columbus and serves as a central office building for Columbus employees.
To put it mildly, the COB is anything but ordinary.
According to Visit Columbus, original construction of the COB was comprised of a zigzag building design with columns and narrow windows to reduce noise and provide sun control. When modern preferences called for light and bright offices, combined with the need for some significant maintenance updates, Cummins seized an opportunity during the renovation to put a new spin on the space.
Framed by a curved drive, the front lobby of the COB had previously been home to a Cummins museum, showcasing several of Cummins’ historic technologies and other artifacts. Before renovations started, the design team began compiling feedback from stakeholders about their vision for the space that previously held the museum.
One particular phrase rang strong through the feedback: "A short look back, a long look forward." And so it became the guiding light for the renovated space.
The new space is now host to many new technologies, highlighting the important work Cummins is doing to power a more prosperous world. The space showcases the energy that fuels the company and is felt by those who walk through the exhibits.
Along with new technologies, the space also pays respect to the building blocks that are at the core of Cummins history. One of the most eye-catching exhibits in the new space is an old - but important - truck hanging on the wall.
Yes, there is a 1989 Cummins-powered Dodge truck hanging on the wall at the COB.
I Spy: A Cummins-powered Ram D250
Cummins and Ram trucks have had a long partnership as industry leaders for on-highway pickup trucks. One of the earliest production models, the 1989 truck started its life as a 1988 Model Year D250, built in August of 1987 at Chrysler's Warren Truck Assembly Plant in Detroit, Mich.
The truck was displayed at several shows, including the 1988 Mid-America Truck Show in Louisville, Ky. That same year, the truck was featured in the United States Auto Club (USAC) “Ford VS Chevy VS Dodge” diesel comparison test in Colorado. The Dodge truck was the winner in all categories. Finally, in 1989, the truck was upfitted to current model year production D250 diesel pickup.
Hanging a truck on a wall is not easily done. Cummins and the COB renovation team partnered with a local Columbus contractor and a structural engineering firm to determine the best way to display the truck.
So how did they do it? The short answer: Lots of steel and reinforcements.
A special lift, pictured above, was made to hoist the truck into place. Some onsite modifications were made and, slowly but surely, the truck was secured into place.
The truck is displayed in non-restored condition, ensuring that the vehicle could be taken down and run in the future.
What started as a rented space in the Cerealine building in 1918 has been transformed by Cummins, a company that embraces the future and challenged the impossible for over a century.
Read more about Cummins history and see how our employees, company and customers have been Challenging The Impossible for over 100 years.