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As Emission and Fuel Efficiency Standards become More Stringent, Semi-trailers are Entering a Phase of Innovative Growth
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Frost & Sullivan's research service on the global semi-trailers market provides a detailed analysis of market and technology trends, challenges, and forecasts from 2017 to 2025. The study covers North America, Western Europe, Brazil, Russia, China, Asia-Pacific, India, and Rest-of-World. It identifies and analyzes the key regulations and the evolution of semi-trailer technologies. In addition, it outlines price, competitive competencies, and market shares of key manufacturers. The study also estimates the semi-trailer body-type splits of key regions. North America, Europe, and China will be the main markets over the forecast period due to economic growth and infrastructure development. Countries such as Russia, Brazil, and India are expected to become future growth areas as their economies recover and as infrastructure development continues.The semi-trailer has always been seen as a complimentary piece of equipment in comparison to the tractor. Global fleets and owner operators are highly price-sensitive. As a result, the semi-trailer has consistently seen minimal innovation as consumers are not willing to pay for advanced technologies. Times are changing as increasingly stringent regulations now demand improved efficiency and safety measures from tractor-trailer combinations. In the past, regulations solely focused on heavy-duty tractor improvements and neglected semi-trailers. However, EPA GHG Phase 2 in North America has, for the first time, included semi-trailers for efficiency gains. Phase 2 is expected to drive semi-trailer innovation, and it will mandate that all new semi-trailers possess a combination of aerodynamics and low rolling resistant tires. This will be a positive step that will help to reduce the carbon footprint of the trucking industry in North America and improve fuel efficiency. Euro VII is under development and is expected to include semi-trailers in some form, which will drive the efficiency of the tractor-trailer combination. Strong examples of this movement are in place, with proposed efficiency changes and leading tractor and trailer OEMs collaborating to develop an integrated efficiency combination. China has also implemented regulations for semi-trailers that are focused on safety (freight overloading is a key concern in the country). This will act as a positive step for the country in terms of boosting demand for semi-trailers and improving the on-road handling of tractor-trailer combinations.In such an environment, semi-trailers are expected to undergo an evolution from a commodity to a highly customized and engineered product. Innovation will be focused on aerodynamics, tire safety / maintenance, light weighting, electrified axles, tractor-trailer integration, and trailer telematics.Author: Wallace Lau
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