Leading Semi Truck Manufacturers in America

If you’re trying to determine which semi trucks would be the best choice for your trucking company, you’re in the right place. There are plenty of brands that make solid semi trucks, but according to Truck Driver News, only a few qualify as the best of the best. Some semi truck brands focus on lightweight materials for improved fuel efficiency, while others put an emphasis on driver comfort and safety. You’ll find options at different price points, maintenance costs, load ratings, and so on. There isn’t any single brand that stands out as the best choice for every trucking company; the one that’s best for you is the one that meets all of your criteria, and then some.

Western Star

This brand focuses not only on the quality of their trucks, but also on the level of customization that’s offered. Trucking companies that have unique requirements for their fleets can go to Western Star for a range of models; their most popular models are the Western Star 5700XE and the Western Star 49X. The first one is built for regional applications as well as long-haul trips, while the second one is versatile enough for vocational, long-haul, and other applications. 

This brand is known for making semi trucks that are comfortable, reliable, and high-performing, which is why they’re a popular choice for drivers as well as owner-operators. Between the dependability of their vehicles, and the level of customization that’s offered, it’s no wonder that Western Star helps set the industry’s standard of excellence.


As a highly innovative brand, International is known for the advanced technology used in their trucks. Not only do these features enhance the comfort of drivers, but they also improve fuel efficiency.

International’s most popular models are the International HV and the International LT; they both have advanced safety features, reliable track records, and exceptional performance. The HV is built for heavy-duty loads in municipal and vocational applications, while the LT is designed for long-haul trips. However, the brand has many other models to choose from as well. All of them offer the same dependability, fuel efficiency, and innovation that International trucks are known for, making this brand a great choice for any trucking business.


Most semi trucks are required to be durable by default; after all, they’re supposed to last for miles and miles while hauling heavy loads. In Mack’s case, though, they happen to be known for the ruggedness of their trucks. There’s even a saying, “built like a Mack truck”, that’s used to describe something that’s exceptionally strong and durable. As you can imagine, this reputation is backed up by the quality of the brand’s offerings. 

Their most popular trucks are the Mack Granite and the Mack Anthem, which are famous for their superior ruggedness and performance. The Granite is an especially heavy-duty semi truck, designed for rugged applications like construction. The Anthem is suited for highway driving, with an aerodynamic design and maximized fuel efficiency. Anyone in the trucking industry who wants a combination of durability, reliability, and power would be happy with what Mack has to offer.


As with their other vehicles, Volvo’s semi trucks have a reputation for superior safety ratings. Their trucks are also fuel-efficient thanks to both their aerodynamic shape and various technological innovations. Many owner-operators choose either the Volvo VNR or the Volvo VNL, which are versatile as well as reliable. They have an array of features that maximize driver productivity and fuel efficiency, which is a plus for both regional and long-haul truckers. Even though Volvo semi trucks are a bit more expensive to repair than some other brands, the added safety and efficiency are thought to be worth the cost.


Here’s one brand that combines style and function. Peterbilt is known for offering premium semi trucks, with stylish exteriors and spacious interiors. In fact, one of their popular models has the largest sleeper cab available. All of their trucks have features that improve driver productivity, confidence, and safety, which in turn boosts overall efficiency. Trucking companies that focus on long-haul trips favor Peterbilt trucks because they’re designed to give drivers a pleasant experience, while performing well on the road. The brand’s most popular semi trucks are the Peterbilt 389 and the Peterbilt 579, both of which offer advanced technology and a top-notch track record.


This is one of the most respected semi truck brands in the US, with a wide range of models available. The most popular ones are the T880 and the T680, which are both preferred because of their safety ratings, as well as the features that add to the comfort of the drivers. The T880 has especially advanced features such as driver assistance systems, which enhance productivity and safety. It’s especially heavy-duty, and is perfect for tough applications. The T680 is ideal for long-haul drives, since it’s sleeker and more fuel-efficient. Kenworth also offers customization options, which are perfect for owner-operators who want specific features to be included or excluded for their fleet.


If the experts had to pick the single best semi truck manufacturer, they might well decide on Freightliner. This brand offers the most balanced combination of ruggedness, reliability, affordability, and innovation. Plus, they have parts and service centers all across the country; this extensive network ensures that truckers have relatively easy access to repair or maintenance services whenever needed. 

Freightliner’s most popular models are the M2 106 and the Cascadia, which are designed regional as well as long-haul applications. With advanced driver assistance systems and safety features, this brand’s trucks help lower the rate of accidents and improve driver confidence.

The takeaway

Every trucking company has their own specific requirements for their fleets, but there’s a lot of overlap as well. The trucks should be reliable, efficient, and safe, offering a combination of quality and cost-effectiveness. Even though the brands above have their own areas of specialization, they’re all known for providing top-rated semi trucks that are proven to last. Regardless of what a trucking company is looking for, one of these brands is sure to have it.

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