Kenworth, Peterbilt to Skip Mid-America Show Next Year

Tom Berg, Truck Editor | October 23, 2015



Kenworth Truck and Peterbilt Motors say they will not exhibit at the Mid-America Trucking Show next year, joining all other heavy-truck original equipment manufacturers who also announced they are skipping the show. The Paccar sister companies made their decisions separately, and revealed their plans on different days in the past week.

Like the other OEMs, Kenworth and Peterbilt said they will return to MATS in 2017, and will alternate their presence with the biennial IAA Commercial Vehicle Show in Germany. It is set for next September 22-29.

Daimler Trucks was the first to announce its non-participation in MATS 2016, and its alternating IAA-MATS strategy. MATS in Louisville is North America’s largest truck show, and it will remain so unless other major exhibitors also decide to pull out.

“It was a Kenworth decision” to skip MATS and not one made by Paccar Inc., corporate parent of KW and Peterbilt, said Preston Feight, the division’s general manager, during a press conference on Sunday at an American Trucking Associations meeting in Philadelphia.

The money saved will be spent during the year on other marketing efforts and outreach events aimed at truck operators, drivers and the press, he said.

In response to an inquiry, Peterbilt issued this statement on Wednesday:

“After carefully considering our marketing strategies for next year and beyond, Peterbilt has decided to exhibit at the Mid-America Trucking Show on a bi-annual schedule. We wish MATS success in 2016 and we look forward to participating in the 2017 show.

“Additionally, Peterbilt is a Paccar company – a global leader in the manufacturer and support of commercial vehicles – and the bi-annual MATS show strategy will be complemented by Paccar’s participation at IAA, held every other year in Hannover, Germany.”