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Report Code: MRR-TANKER12 View all Publications
Tanker Truck/Body and Tanker Trailer Manufacturing in North America

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Analysis & evaluation of the size, segmentation, channels, and competitive structure underlying the fabrication and manufacture of tanker trucks and tanker trailers in North America. V. 2: revised and updated January 2013.


Tanker trucks and trailers are containers designed for transport of dry bulk cargo, liquids, semi-liquids and gases. Tanker bodies scoped in this report also include vacuum tank bodies designed to transport hazardous and non-hazardous industrial and municipal waste. Tanker trailers are large over-the-road trailer bodies that are designed to be pulled by a tractor. Tanker truck bodies are mounted on truck chassis and are smaller in size and capacity than tanker trailers.

Tanker bodies may be insulated or non-insulated, pressurized or non-pressurized, and designed for single or multiple loads by means of internal divisions within the tank body. Tanker trucks and trailers are similar in functionality and are designed around the product being transported. Certain tanker trucks and trailers cater to different user segments, primarily on account of difference in size and capacity.

STN has identified 126 manufacturers of tanker truck bodies and trailers. The value of tanker fabrication in North America is estimated at $1.59 billion for 2011. Tanker manufacturing facilities are typically located in regions producing the material transported. This industry—for both trucks and trailers—is fragmented, with a large number of small, regionally focused manufacturers.  Most manufacturers focus on just one product segment, and manufacturers present in a particular segment usually do not manufacture all product categories within that segment.

Certain product categories feature companies which manufacture both truck-mounted tanker bodies and tanker trailers. For instance, most bulk feed body manufacturers manufacture both truck bodies and trailers. Dry bulk bodies are only trailer units. Tanker bodies for transport of crude oil are mainly trailers; very few truck body units are manufactured. Tanks for transport of petroleum and petroleum products are both truck body and trailer units.

Categories which require DOT certification, such as petroleum, crude oil and chemical tank bodies, aviation refuelers, LPG bodies, compressed gas trailers and coded vacuum bodies, have higher entry barriers as compared to the non-coded variants.

Market dynamics driving demand in each buyer segment are different, which in turn impact demand for tanker bodies in that product category. The energy and construction sectors are the primary determinants of demand for tanker bodies. The primary customer segment for both tanker trucks and trailers is the oil and gas industry. Other important customer segments include the chemical, construction and agricultural industries, municipal agencies, and contractors who service the septic waste industry.

The tanker truck and trailer manufacturing industry across all categories suffered a severe shrinkage in demand over the period 2008-2009. Sale of tanker bodies was at its peak in 2007 and was its worst in 2009, contracting by an estimated 45% in 2009 over 2007. However the boom in the energy sector since 2010 has led to an unprecedented increase in demand for tankers that cater to the oil and gas industry. Production grew tremendously in 2011, with production up 17% over 2010. Despite the strong recovery since 2010, the market size of most categories in 2011, with the exception of crude oil tankers, continued to be below the peaks achieved in 2006-2007.

The outlook going forward in this segment remains positive, mainly because of an above-average increase in production of liquid and dry bulk trailers catering to the upstream and midstream segments of the oil and gas industry. Production of truck bodies and trailers in most other segments, however, is expected to remain flat in the short term. In addition to historical production numbers from 2006 – 2011, forecasts for the years 2012 – 2016 are included in this report.

These and other aspects of the segment are highlighted in this succinct, pioneering report from The report can be put to immediate use for sales and market planning, M&A identification, competitive share analysis, alliances and technology transfer considerations.

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