I’ve been to a few custom truck shows around the country.  The entrants are all pretty much the same: “classic” styled trucks tricked out with protruding chrome stacks, stretched frames, big hoods and ginormous air cleaners.  In other words – a nightmare for efficiency.  The custom paint jobs are really the only major difference between many of them.  I think it’s cool that owners take pride in their ride, but I’m personally not that impressed with these types of shows.  There’s not a lot of diversity in styling to be found.  I’m a subscriber to the adage, “Chrome won’t get you home.”  I’m impressed with practicability and you rarely find that at these types of shows.

I’d like to attend a truck show that showcases aerodynamic trucks, showcasing practical after-market customizations that add value to a trucking operation.  Sure, the manufacturers of such equipment are always at the big shows, but I’m speaking of actual owner-operators and fleets displaying equipment that they’re currently using.  No one can display a product or a service better than one who is successfully using it.  What a strange idea – an aerodynamic truck show.

I just got back from a coast to coast run.  I didn’t see many classic styled trucks on the trans-continental interstates.  I observed late model, aerodynamic styled trucks that were making the coast to coast trek.  Efficiency is especially important on these longer runs.  The rate per mile is less than on a shorter, regional run and you must be able to obtain above average fuel economy in order to compete in this market.  Blowing black smoke at 5.5 mpg won’t cut it very long against the diesel sipping aero-styled trucks of recent years.

It seems the golden age of technology has finally arrived.  Will we continue to dwell in the past where brick wall styling and 1970's technology is still celebrated?  As the trucking industry rapidly progresses forward, successful trucking companies and owner-operators will have to stay on the forward edge of efficiency or be left in the dusty past.  If you’re an owner of an aerodynamic truck, I want to encourage you to start entering these truck shows and show off the beautiful curves of wind-tunnel tested aerodynamics.

Comments (6)

Joey Slaughter

Joey Slaughter is the owner of Blue Ridge Transport, LLC. Joey has been in the trucking industry since 1992.

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Linda, I'm so glad you and Bob compete and show the rest of them that modern styling and technology is beautiful and efficient.

June 27, 2016 17:41:29 PM

YES Joey I could not agree more. Our truck has done well in shows because it is new but I was told it would not be able to compete in some other shows as it was to "Vanilla". Bling does not make money.

June 27, 2016 13:07:38 PM

Great to hear Stephen. I think you're going to be pleased. That's a perfect example of how these proposed shows would be very beneficial to all. Great points Henry and Jeff!

June 27, 2016 11:02:18 AM

We would be in for a aero truck show. It would be great seeing the different ideas and setups. We just had the FlowBelow Aero Kit added to our truck Saturday. Now the experiment begins.

June 27, 2016 8:50:18 AM

Take a look at the streamlined art deco era when sleek was the style. The graphics on the blue and gold truck in your blog where inspired by a designer from the art deco era by the name of Raymond Loewy. Google his name and I believe you will find aero is old school . I think its time for a new look as well .

June 27, 2016 5:57:56 AM

It is interesting that trucks from the late 1o40s paid more attention to aerodynamics than most show trucks,

June 27, 2016 5:28:38 AM