XTRA Lease Refreshes Fleet with 9,400 New Trailers

Ron Kemm

XTRA Lease, the nation’s leading provider of semi-trailer rentals and leases, has ordered approximately 9,400 new vans and reefers for 2012. Equipped with fuel-saving aerodynamic side skirts, the new models will replace many older model trailers that will be re-designated as cartage or storage trailers, or sold.

Since 2010, XTRA Lease has invested heavily in new trailer orders, making late-model equipment accessible to trucking companies and shippers via rental and leasing programs. To keep its inventory updated, the company has ordered nearly 25,000 trailers over the past 2.5 years. In addition, the trailer lessor is refurbishing approximately 1,000 flatbeds to restore them to like-new condition.

“In an economic era in which few companies have the capital resources to keep fleets updated with high-performance, late-model equipment, XTRA Lease will continue to offer new trailers through rental and leasing opportunities,” said Bill Franz, President and CEO. “Shippers haven’t reduced expectations for on-time deliveries. But completing them with an aging, over-the-road fleet is risky.

“We plan on helping fleets reduce their risk by making high-performing equipment available to them,” he added. “Not only will they reduce chances of mechanical failure and breakdowns, fleets can avoid higher maintenance costs inherent with older equipment.”

New vans and reefers are due to arrive in XTRA Lease branches from manufacturers’ plants beginning in February. Production will continue through August. The company will continue to install trailer tracking units as a standard feature on vans targeted for the rental fleet. 

“There is no other service available on a trailer more powerful than trailer tracking to help fleets reduce costs,” Franz said.  “We’re committed to providing a service that helps customers locate dormant trailers faster, enabling them to return under-utilized trailers quickly and save significant rental costs.”

Fuel-saving aerodynamic side skirts and low rolling resistance tires are now standard features on XTRA Lease trailers. Side skirts save fleets an estimated five percent in fuel costs, based on EPA verification and depending on number of miles and speed traveled. Low rolling resistance tires can save an additional 1.5 percent in fuel, again based on a carrier’s trucking operation. Combined, the two features can save fleets 6.5 percent in fuel costs.

XTRA Lease’s new trailers can travel California’s highways without penalty, as they comply with SmartWay and the state’s Greenhouse Gas regulations.

XTRA Lease also announced it will continue a program in 2012 to refurbish approximately 1,000 flatbeds. The company is targeting 1999-2001 model-year flatbed units in its fleet to extend the life of each trailer by about eight years.

Each refurbished flatbed receives:

  • Blasting and painting of all steel parts
  • New aluminum floors with wood nailing strips (which saves 400 lbs.)
  • New air and electrical, including lights
  • New wheels
  • New brake linings
  • Straightening of rub rails and repairing of all welds
  • New shocks and airbags (on air-ride suspensions)

Based in St. Louis and owned by Berkshire Hathaway, XTRA Lease is the leading provider of over-the-road trailers for rent or lease in the U.S. With 60 locations, the company offers a fleet of approximately 80,000 trailers, including dry vans, flatbeds, reefers, local cartage vans, storage trailers and specialty equipment.