LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Utility Trailer has constructed a legacy trailer that will tour North America in honour of its 100-year history.
The trailer was displayed at the Mid-America Trucking Show. Craig Bennett, senior vice-president of sales and marketing, said Utility Trailer remains a family-run company and plans to stay that way. Members of the fourth generation are now involved with the company.
Business has been good of late for Utility, Bennett said.
“We’ve been fortunate to have record output the last couple years,” he said.
Among the things the company is most proud of, is holding the leading market share position for refrigerated trailers for 20 years.
“That’s quite a feat in a mature industry like ours,” Bennett said.
This year, Utility hopes to build 40,000 trailers. About half of its production is comprised of reefer trailers, 44% are dry vans and the remainder are flatdecks and curtainside trailers.
Bennett says there’s room to grow in the dry van segment, but the company is running at capacity, so “we have to look at expansion before we can do any more.”
Utility, Bennett said, is the only trailer manufacturer to own and operate its own test track. That has helped it to develop lighter-weight, more durable designs and to evaluate supplier components.
“Tractors have gotten heavier and the 80,000-lb gross load has not changed,” Bennett said. “Everyone is wanting the trailer guys to get lighter so they don’t have to sacrifice cargo. That’s our challenge. It has always been our challenge, but even more so the last 10 years.”