Kenworth offering 'glider' kits to make old trucks new again
Kenworth Truck Company has released several glider kits for various popular models of its heavy-duty trucks to help owners bring older trucks back into service as "new."
A glider is a kit designed to install on an existing truck chassis and replace the non-powertrain components (interior, missing or broken body pieces, etc). They're meant to refurbish and restore trucks that have seen extensive wear or damage. From there, users can upgrade engine and other powertrain components to match current regulations (often these trucks require engine replacement) and be put back on the road as "used" - avoiding many taxes associated with a new truck and with non-compliant trucks.
There are exceptions to how the Federal Excise Tax (FET) is applied, of course, so if the truck is de-commissioned as a wreck, sees a change of service (moving from one use to another, such as from a dock-only to street use), or where restoration costs more than 75% of actual value, the FET will still be charged. In most cases, however, trucks currently shuttered pending de-comm or needing extensive repair after an accident could be upgraded to like-new using a glider kit and upgraded power train.
Kenworth is offering the kits in its T660, T800 (shown), and W900L (aka "W9 long nose") models. Kits are available through Paccar dealerships and it's likely that, if these are popular, other Paccar brands such as Peterbilt will follow.