Photo: Mid-America Trucking Show

Photo: Mid-America Trucking Show

The Mid-America Trucking Show returns this week, going from March 23-25 in Louisville, Ky., and this year it once again features several major manufacturers and suppliers exhibiting new technology and equipment.

MATS is the largest annual heavy-duty trucking industry event. It typically draws more than 70,000 attendees and over 1,000 exhibitors showcasing the latest products and services, according to show organizers. It is held each year at the Kentucky Exposition Center in Louisville.

However, last year’s event was notable for those that didn’t show up, namely all of the major Class 8 original equipment manufacturers. In the months that followed MATS 2016, Peterbilt, Kenworth, and Mack announced a return to the show. Navistar, Volvo, and Daimler Trucks North America will be absent this year, though certain brand dealers will still have a presence.

Overall, this year’s event will feature over 1,100 exhibitors spread out over 1.1-million square feet of floor space. There will also be educational seminars and special events, such as the PKY Truck Beauty Championship and a MATS concert.

This year’s educational sessions will feature three seminars by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration covering driver training and the upcoming ELD Mandate and the American Trucking Associations will give an update on current trucking issues. There will also be several special sessions on important and useful topics such as a talk on “How to Get More MPGs Out of Your Truck” hosted by representatives from Shell Lubricants and the North American Council on Fuel Efficiency. A full schedule of seminars is available here.

Among the OEMs at the show, Peterbilt will show the company’s latest products and services and new technologies. Its exhibit will feature 10 Peterbilt trucks, including the Model 579 Epiq, with its fuel economy enhancements and a new day cab configuration.

Cummins will be in attendance, hosting a ride-and-drive event centered around its X15 Efficiency and X15 Performance Series engines. Trucks with the engine will haul fully loaded trailers on an Interstate loop, giving drivers a real-world feel for acceleration and power, as well as the fuel efficiency of the motor.

Bendix will once again host its Tech Talk Series covering topics from air dryer performance to brake maintenance. New this year is a look at the trucking industry’s path toward an automated future. The Tech Talk will still feature how-to demonstrations, question and answer sessions, and discussions of the issues and technologies shaping the industry.  

“With the industry constantly changing, from technologies to regulations, the ‘must see’ Bendix Tech Talks offer a unique forum for people throughout the trucking business – drivers and fleet operators, OEs and maintenance technicians – to discuss the topics that matter most to them,” said Barbara Gould, Bendix director of communications.

The Women In Trucking Association will be holding its 8th Annual Salute to Women Behind the Wheel, recognizing the years of service of professional female drivers. The event will feature refreshments, prizes, goody bags, and a group photo of all women drivers in attendance.

The Tire Retread & Repair Information Bureau is renewing its Spot the Retreads competition this year, offering visitors to its booth a chance to identify a range of new and retreaded tires. Participates who correctly identify all the tires will be entered into daily drawings for a set of eight commercial truck tires to be retreaded on the participants’ own casings.

Heavy Duty Trucking will be there to deliver the latest news, analysis, and photos from the show, including any new product announcements from manufacturers and suppliers.

For complete information on the event including announcements and schedules, go to the Mid-America Trucking Show website.