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EPA to revisit engine, emissions standards affecting glider trucks

Sources: U.S. Environmental Protection Agency; J.D. Power Valuation Services, McLean, Va.

Responding to concerns from truck glider kit and trailer stakeholders, EPA is taking a second look at provisions of the Phase 2 Greenhouse Gas Emissions and Fuel Efficiency Standards for Medium- and Heavy-Duty Engines rule.

According to J.D. Power Valuation Services, the rule limits a) the number of glider kit vehicles, powered by rebuilt EPA 1998-grade diesel engines, that body or trailer builders can sell for the 2017 calendar year; b) each builder’s output of pre-emissions units to the greatest number built in any year between 2010-2014; and, the glider kit industry to its original purpose of mating a wrecked or worn-out truck’s drivetrain with a new body and chassis.

EPA and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration issued greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and fuel efficiency standards for 2014-2018 model year medium- and heavy-duty vehicles in 2011. Dubbed Phase 1, they applied to newly manufactured engines, tractors, vocational vehicles, large pickups, and vans. In October 2016, the agencies updated the standards for 2021-2027 model year medium- and heavy-duty vehicles, and—for the first time under the GHG program— regulated trailers and gliders with compliance deadlines beginning in 2018.

“In light of the significant issues raised, the agency has decided to revisit the Phase 2 trailer and glider provisions,” says EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt. “We intend to initiate a rulemaking process that incorporates the latest technical data and is wholly consistent with our authority under the Clean Air Act.”