SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (WMBD) — The 797F Mining Truck manufactured by Caterpillar, Inc. in Decatur has been declared the winner of the inaugural “Makers Madness” contest, earning the title of Coolest Thing Made in Illinois.
Following eight weeks of competition, the online bracket-style tournament was hosted by the Illinois Manufacturers’ Association to showcase the many amazing products made by companies across the state along with the range of career opportunities available in the industry. Voters chose the mining truck from a field of more than 260 individual products initially nominated from across the state, with nearly 300,000 votes cast over the course of the competition.
“The Caterpillar 797F Mining Truck is a great example of American manufacturing, innovation and ingenuity and is well-deserving of the title of Coolest Thing Made in Illinois. Designed for mining and heavy-duty construction, this iconic truck is rugged and dependable,” said Mark Denzler, president and CEO of the Illinois Manufacturers’ Association. “While this contest began before we started to feel the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, Makers Madness has been a great way to showcase the wonderful products made in Illinois and the great career opportunities manufacturing offers. Every day, our manufacturers are making life-saving products, equipping first responders and ensuring our food supply remains safe and strong.”
The Caterpillar 797F, made in Decatur, is the world’s largest mechanical truck.