<img height="1" width="1" style="display:none" src="https://www.facebook.com/tr?id=1241344019315396&amp;ev=PageView&amp;noscript=1">

Mar 20 2024

The trailer industry is undergoing a transformative period, marked by innovative designs, technological advancements, and a heightened focus on sustainability. Encompassing recreational trailers to tractor trailers, several trends are shaping the future of this essential automotive industry sector.

1. Smart Trailers and Connectivity

Smart trailers, while not new technology, are starting to grow in popularity as fleets are seeing the value in tracking their trailers separately from the vehicles. Even when the trailer is attached to the truck and the location is already known, other data points are valuable for fleet managers to gain greater insight, including the cargo inside, internal temperature, wheel-end temperature, tire pressure, door open/close times, etc.  While much of this “smart” data isn’t encoded in a trailer VIN, it’s important to leverage a trailer VIN decoding solution to ensure all assets are properly cataloged. Leveraging a VIN number to identify commonalities in trailer assets will save significant time in understanding the capabilities of your hauling fleet.

2. Safety innovations

The impacts of a tractor-trailer accident can be catastrophic for everyone involved. As such, some of the safety features we see in the modern vehicle have also made their way to the trailer market for improved safety. As an example, given the increased blindspots when towing a trailer, newer trailers are equipped with blind spot detection systems. Some other key safety technology advances include backup cameras, active rollover protection, air suspension systems, trailer stability assist (TSA), trailer reverse steering control (TRSC), etc. 

3. Lightweight and Aerodynamic Designs

The need for lighter and more aerodynamic trailers has grown for a couple of reasons. Not only is it costly to tow a trailer with the current cost of gas, but those using an EV to tow will experience reduced range. According to a CleanTechnica article, understanding aerodynamics is more important than weight given that the weight is easy to determine and does not have as big of an impact in the big picture, provided it’s within 80% of the vehicle’s towing capacity. However, understanding which designs are truly the most aerodynamic and will deliver on greater fuel economy/EV range is a little more challenging. 

RV Lifestyle did an A/B test to see how important aerodynamics actually were and found that the more aerodynamic trailer which was double the length of the non-aerodynamic trailer, nearly double the weight, 7” taller and twice the tires to turn, got 12% greater fuel efficiency.

4. Off-road capabilities

The recreational off-road vehicle (ROV) market is not the only market growing in popularity, as discussed in a previous article. The off-road trailers market is also growing significantly, valued at $25.87 Billion in 2021 and projected to reach $47.77 Billion by 2030 (source: Verified Market Research). Camping enthusiasts enjoy the flexibility to camp in remote locations that otherwise couldn’t be reached with a typical trailer. These trailers come equipped with robust suspensions, reinforced chassis, and durable exteriors to navigate rough terrains.

5. Sustainable Trailers

As the transition to EVs continues to be the talk of the auto industry, it should come as no surprise that trailer manufacturers are also striving to decrease their carbon footprint. Airstream and REI unveiled a new trailer model last summer in their ongoing brand collaboration that was designed with sustainability at the forefront. Some of these eco-friendly features include recycled construction and textile materials, cabinetry created from lightweight and sustainably grown wood, and an option solar package and water-saving composting toilet. Additionally, semi trailers are becoming greener with features such as an electric axle, solar panels, and Ecolution’s Module Active Response System (MARS) technology

6. Compact RV trailers

Not everyone has the space, budget, or even the proper hauling vehicle for a full-sized RV, which makes towable compact (lightweight) RVs an enticing option for the camping enthusiast. There have been several new compact RVs introduced to capture this market. Many of these compact RVs are somewhere between a teardrop and pop-up trailer in size, with quite a bit of amenities other than a bathroom (in most cases), which typically adds quite a bit of weight and requires a larger floor plan. However, many of these compact trailers offer an optional outdoor shower stall.

As the trailer industry evolves, these trends showcase a commitment to innovation, safety, sustainability, and meeting the diverse needs of businesses and consumers alike. Whether you’re a weekend traveler, a full-time nomad, or a business owner needing more effective hauling solutions, the trailer industry is making some great strides with some exciting trends.

If your business needs a trailer identification solution, DataOne would be excited to discuss the benefits of our trailer VIN decoding product.

Request Information

Add A Comment