Kenworth Truck Co. is celebrating 90 years in business in 2013 and will be hosting a number of events throughout the year to mark the occasion. (The company said it will release details on these as they come closer.)
Founded in 1923 by Harry W. Kent and Edgar K. Worthington, the company built its legacy on building the right truck for each customer’s application, and “build that truck to last.”
That first year, the small Seattle truck manufacturer produced 78 six-cylinder, gasoline-powered trucks.
The company was the first to install diesel engines as standard equipment, it said, in 1933. It also noted that it sold the first sleeper cab in 1936.
Along the company has produced more than 900,000 trucks and achieved many milestones. Among them was the Kenworth T600A, which it said was one of the first truly aerodynamic Class 8 trucks, in 1985. A year later, the Kenworth T800 was introduced and is widely recognized for serving productively in applications such as dump truck, mixer, logger, and extreme heavy haul. The milestone 250,000th T800 was produced and celebrated last year.
At the 2012 Mid-America Trucking Show, Kenworth pushed its aerodynamics envelop again with the introduction of the T680.
“Over the past 90 years, Kenworth has played an essential role in the development of trucks that are more fuel efficient, productive and economical to operate,” said Gary Moore, Kenworth’s general manager and PACCAR vice president. “It’s the foundation that began when Harry Kent and Edgar Worthington incorporated the Gersix Motor Company as ‘Kenworth’ in 1923, and delivering trucks that provide exceptional performance continues today.
Kenworth’s claim is that it makes the World’s Best Trucks. While some might argue that point, 90 years of building trucks is a pretty good yardstick to have on your side of the argument.