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Navigating the Road Ahead: Insights from the ATD Show Electrification Panel 



On Friday, Feb. 2, ATD hosted a compelling panel discussion titled, "Future of Electrification for the Truck Market" at ATD Show 2024 in Las Vegas. The panel delved into the current state and future prospects of electrification in the heavy-duty commercial industry, featuring industry experts who shared their unique perspectives and experiences.

The panel explored critical topics impacting the speed of zero emission commercial vehicle (ZEV) adoption, including government regulations and incentives, market expectations, and the challenges and opportunities for the medium and heavy-duty market. Participants gained insight into installing infrastructure for charging commercial vehicles; and the discussion provided invaluable guidance for truck dealerships considering charger purchases. The overarching question of what happens if ambitious electrification goals prove elusive was also addressed.

The panel included three trucking industry leaders: K.C. Heidler, president and CEO of Tom’s Truck Center in Santa Ana, Calif.; Dan Murray, ATRI senior vice president; and Paul Rosa, senior vice president of procurement and fleeting planning of Penske Truck Leasing.

ATD President Laura Perrotta moderated the discussion, guiding the conversation and ensuring a comprehensive exploration of the topics at hand.

“Having these experts share their insights on electrification is incredibly valuable to our members,” said Perrotta. “Commercial truck dealers are making investments to sell and service electric trucks, but we need to ensure that the regulatory landscape isn’t an impediment allowing truck dealers to meet their customer’s needs with affordable and reliable trucks that pencil out in the long run.”

As the industry navigates the road ahead, the perspectives shared by industry leaders shed light on the challenges and opportunities that lie before them. The panel's discussions on government regulations, market expectations, and infrastructure considerations contribute to a better understanding of the evolving landscape of truck electrification.

Dan Murray summed it up, stating, "Government at all levels are pushing electric vehicles under the assumption that we want them, we’re ready for them, and they’ll save the planet. It’s unfortunate that no one first stopped to consider the facts… Now we’ll be dealing with the unintended consequences for years."

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