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Kenworth's Legacy Dates to 1912

Kenworth is one of America's oldest and best-known truck brands. Today, the Paccar subsidiary is headquartered in Kirkland, Washington, a suburb of Seattle.

Founded More than a Century Ago

Kenworth started out as a Portland, Oregon, car/truck dealership owned and operated by George and Louis Gerlinger. In 1914, two years after the company's inception, the brothers set out to design and build a truck with a six-cylinder engine, an industry first. In 1915, they introduced the “Gersix," which was popular among loggers.

First to Make Diesels Standard

In 1917, business partners Capt. Frederick Kent and Edgar Worthington bought the business. In 1923, Kent’s son and Worthington used portions of their last names to create the Kenworth brand. In 1933, the Kenworth Motor Truck Company became the first manufacturer to make diesel engines standard on its trucks. The Pacific Car and Foundry Company (Paccar) purchased Kenworth in 1945.

Featured in Films and TV Shows

Over the years, Kenworth semis have been featured in a number of films and TV series. The 1977 film “Smokey and the Bandit” featured a Kenworth W-900. In the 1989 thriller “Licence to Kill,” James Bond also drives a W-900. The 1970s TV series “Movin’ On” featured 1973 Kenworth Model A sleeper cabs for most of the shows.

As of 2016, Kenworth ranked fifth among the top Class 8 truck manufacturers. Peterbilt, Kenworth’s sister company at Paccar, ranked third.

Michigan Truck Sales features a fine selection of pre-owned trucks, trailers and construction equipment. We can also help you when you want to get that extra 50-100 horsepower out of your engine. Contact us anytime you need parts and service in southern Michigan.


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