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Optimism About Trucking Economy BUT What About Heavy-Duty Parts

On Friday, August 5, 2022, our host went live to discuss if we should have optimism about the trucking economy and to review a new product from ALCOA Wheels.

Episode 224:  ATA’s Chris Spear is optimistic about the trucking economy. What about the heavy-duty parts industry? In this live video, our host Jamie Irvine will fill you in on what we are seeing.

Trucking Economy Commented on by ATA Chris Spear and Alcoa Wheels Drops New Product


Alcoa® has recently announced a new line of wheels for Freightliner trucks in Menacing Matte Black. Alcoa® Dura-Black™ Wheels for Freightliner is the latest in wheel innovation from the market leader and inventor of the forged aluminum wheel.

Watch the Video Version

Disclaimer: This content and description may contain affiliate links, which means that if you click on one of the product links, The Heavy-Duty Parts Report may receive a small commission. 

Resources Mentioned:

  1. Learn More About Our Consulting Programs for Heavy-Duty Parts and Service Companies
  2. Listen to Jamie Irvine co-host Mind Your Trucking Business! on TNCRadio.live

Sponsors of this Episode:

  1. Want to look up parts but don’t have a part number or the VIN? Download Diesel Parts for free on Desktop or on your Apple or Android device.
  2. Looking for high-quality fuel injection for heavy-duty applications? Visit AMBACInternational.com/Aftermarket
  3. Looking for OEM genuine parts? Visit AlliantPower.com

Buy Parts:

Are you looking to purchase heavy-duty parts and get your commercial vehicle repaired? Get access to one of HDA Truck Pride’s 750 locations across the United States and Canada. Visit HeavyDutyPartsReport.com/BuyParts.

Transcript of Episode:

Jamie Irvine:

You’re listening to The Heavy-Duty Parts Report. I’m your host, Jamie Irvine. And this is the show where you get expert advice about heavy-duty parts that keeps trucks and trailers on the road longer while lowering cost-per-mile.

Welcome to a live broadcast. I wanted to touch base with everyone who follows me and The Heavy-Duty Parts Report on a few things that are going on in the industry and give you a couple updates.

So thank you so much for tuning in this live broadcast is sponsored by The Heavy-Duty Parts Report. You can follow for free, by going over to heavydutypartsreport.com.

We’ve got a lot to cover today. There’s a lot of things happening right now in the industry that I think are noteworthy and we’d like to discuss them right now. There seems to be some optimism for the trucking industry, but what about the heavy-duty parts industry what’s been going on while we’re gonna get to that.

We’re also gonna feature a new heavy-duty product that has come out this week. And we’re gonna give you some updates on what’s going on in the world of Jamie Irvine and The Heavy-Duty Parts Report. So lots to talk about today as always, we would love to have your comments and your feedback. So if you wanna participate in this live broadcast, just hit that comment button and we can talk.

Okay. So first thing I wanted to start off with is a new article that came out talking about the American Trucking Association’s, Chris Spear and how he’s optimistic about the trucking industry. It’s a bit of a click bait kind of heading though, because when you actually look at what he says, him and Transport Topics at Chief Economist, Bob Costello are putting it at about a 50/50 probability that the US is headed towards a recession in Q1 of 2023.

I wanted to quote Chris Spears though. He says that we’re starting to see a lot of the impact of the federal reserve decision to raise interest rates and the impact it is really having. And he talks about 40 year high inflation talks about this inflation rate, nearing 10% we haven’t seen that since the early eighties and of course, record high fuel costs.

This is all having a big impact on the trucking industry. I think a lot of people going into, let’s say the end of June, going into July, they were fully expecting the federal reserve and to announce that we were in an actual recession, they were expecting that things were gonna get really bad.

And it kind of, you know, things are tough right now, but it just kind of didn’t materialize. And so one of the things that we’ve noticed and the heavy-duty parts industry is a lot of companies, they were kind of almost like holding their breath, right?

What gonna happen, and as Q2 came to an end and we moved into Q3, we have seen a marked move in attitude. The leadership groups at heavy-duty parts companies are recognizing that they need to keep going no matter what. Yes, things are more dynamic now than they’ve ever been before at least in most of our working careers, but that doesn’t mean that, you know, the work has to stop. It means it’s actually quite the opposite. We gotta persevere and keep going.

So what we’ve seen from our consulting business, what we’ve seen in The Heavy-Duty Parts Report, as we talk to heavy-duty parts manufacturers and distributors, we see that they are just continuing to move forward. And now they’re starting to look to the fall and saying, okay, we got trade show seasons coming up, we have some initiatives that we’ve had put on hold, and we need to go ahead with those, no matter what.

The trucking industry has always been the canary in the coal mine, if you will. What happens in the trucking industry usually is a precursor to what happens in the economy at large. And so, you know, right now, it just seems like we are managing the significant challenges that society is facing at large in the economy at large. You know, one of the things I find interesting is also the legal challenges that are going on.

There’s a real wrestling right now with the trucking industry and legislators in the United States. We think of assembly bill five or AB five. It’s also being dubbed The Gig Economy law. That’s what they’re dubbing AB five. And basically this law though, you know, although it’s targeted at a lot of industries, it significantly impacts the trucking industry because it goes right after the owner-operator model.

So if you’re a trucking company in California and you’re hiring owner-operators, the advice that we have is get some legal counsel because this law is rather vague and is meant to be litigated. So it’s going to be interesting to see how that plays out.

I don’t know if everyone knows, but I’m also the, co-host not just the host of The Heavy-Duty Parts Report. I’m the co-host on a new radio show on TNC Radio Live called Mind Your Trucking Business. We’ve talked about AB five quite a bit, and we record those radio shows and make them available as podcast episodes after.

So if you want to go back and check those out and really learn in depth about, about the impact AB five is having on the trucking industry, you can go over to TNC radio.live, click the Podcast button, go to Mind Your Trucking Business, and you’ll see all the episodes there. Or you can just search it on wherever you get your podcast.

We’re gonna take a quick break. We’ll be right back.

Sponsors of the Show

Diesel Parts

Don’t have a heavy-duty part number and need to look up a part? Go to parts.diesellaptops.com or download the app on Apple or Android to create your free account.

AMBAC Aftermarket

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Back to the Show

I wanna kind of focus on the heavy-duty parts industry for a moment because we have seen companies continuing to innovate and launch new products. In fact, this week, if you go over to heavydutypartsreport.com, click the Read button and see all of our blog articles.

And there was a press release this week about a new product from our friends over at Alcoa Wheels. And it’s really cool. They they’ve taken their rim and it’s the same quality, same performance, but they’ve given this new option specifically for Freightliners.

It’s called Menacing Matte Black. And it is this new product specifically for that line of trucks. And it is the aluminum wheel, but completely matte black. So if you wanna be able to add some personality to your Freightliner, you know, it’s that forged aluminum wheel that Alcoa Wheels is known for the same quality, same performance, but available for Freightliner owners who want that striking matte black option.

I kind of have a feeling that this product will probably roll out to other makes as well in the future, but that’s a good example of what’s going on in the heavy-duty parts industry, right?

You know, for a while, some of the projects definitely were being put on hold. There were supply chain issues. There was just real challenges with getting products to the marketplace and to the people who needed them. And those challenges still exist. And we’re still struggling through that, but we’ve seen some improvement and we’ve seen how companies like Alcoa Wheels have said, you know, we can’t stop just because of these, these global macro issues.

We’ve gotta persevere, we’ve gotta innovate. We’ve gotta keep going with our plans of whatever they are, launching new initiatives or launching new products. And so we’re really excited because some of our clients, I work as a consultant and I work with heavy-duty parts manufacturers, distributors.

We work with service companies as well. And one of the things that I’ve seen is I’ve seen a real uptick in companies who are saying, look, we’ve gotta move forward with certain projects and we’re gonna do that.

And we’re gonna be resilient. So that gives me a lot of hope. It makes me feel very proud to be part of the trucking industry and specifically work in the heavy-duty parts side of the business. I love it. And I’m just so proud of my clients and the work that they’re doing, because they’re really, really showing the true nature and spirit of the trucking industry.

Okay. So I wanted to kind of finish off my live today with just a little update on what’s happening with us in our company. So The Heavy-Duty Parts Report is where the business started, as I mentioned, we now work as consultants.

We work with our clients to help them with their sales and their marketing and their digital sales channel, getting their e-commerce platforms set up. And then we also work on the business development side with our clients to help them with new initiatives and bringing things to market.

And it’s been exciting to do that. And internally our company is, is innovating that entire service that we offer. And so we got some really, really awesome stuff to bring forward in the next couple weeks.

We’re developing a whole new learning management system to go along with our consulting work. This is going to provide our clients not only with the work that we do with them, with their teams, where we meet with them every single week. It also gives them this LMS to be able to go and go to specific trainings and have 24/7 on-demand access to that information.

So there’s a lot of intellectual property that me and my team have developed over time that we’re housing in this learning management system to go along with our consulting service. But in addition to that, I’m so excited to share with you about some of the licensing deals I’ve done, where I’ve gone out and gotten some of the best of the best in particular subjects.

And we’re getting that information and that intellectual property from those experts, those subject matter experts, and we’re licensing it and putting it inside of our program. So when you work with us, let’s say you want to Master Digital Tools for Sales Pros. That’s our program that we have available right now. It’s live.

You’re not only getting training and, and getting consulting from me and my team with decades of experience. We also have a subject matter expert that has licensed his content to us. That is gonna take your LinkedIn strategy to the stratosphere.

So if you’re in sales and you want to be able to really transform your results and fully leverage digital tools in a way that you’ve never been able to do before, we’ve got the program for you, just head over to heavydutypartsreport.com/consulting. And you can book a discovery call with us where we’re gonna sit down, go through exactly what your situation is and show you what we’ve got and see if there’s an opportunity for us to do business.

We don’t do business with just anybody we’re looking for specific kinds of companies and specific kinds of people that are very motivated to get very specific results. And if it’s a good match, then we can’t wait to get started working with you. It’s gonna be awesome.

So that’s what’s been going on in my world. Today is Friday I’m dressed down a little casual, got my Johnny Cash t-shirt on looking forward to the weekend. My wife and I are new paddle borders. So I’ve been falling in the lake and learning how to do that, but it’s been a lot of fun this summer and things have been going really good.

You know, the trucking industry is such an amazing group of people. The heavy-duty parts industry is, is just an extension of that. And I’m just so happy to be part of it and to let you know what’s going on. So some things are happening, good things are happening in the industry when we’ve had a lot of bad news for a long time.

We’re gonna be starting to do more of these lives a little more regularly. And we’ve also got some adjustments to The Heavy-Duty Parts Report format coming out in September that I think you’re gonna really enjoy. So thanks so much for watching this video and look forward to talking to you very soon.

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