Behind The Badge
Australian-made Kenworths are built to endure.
Used for mining, logging, livestock, general freight and every other heavy-duty application under the sun, they regularly operate in the hottest and harshest environments, travel the most unforgiving roads and haul the largest of payloads — yet still remain the most durable heavy-duty trucks ever built.
So much so, that of the 50,000+ Kenworths produced in Australia since 1971, more than 70% remain registered and in active service. Many, with millions of kilometres on the clock… and counting.
Application engineering is the key to this longevity. Kenworths work harder for longer, because each truck is purpose designed for its intended task, then manufactured to those exacting specifications with uncompromising quality, at our world-class production facility in the Melbourne suburb of Bayswater.
Before we start building a Kenworth, we first assemble a detailed understanding of its intended usage.
Working directly with the customer and their Kenworth dealership, our application engineering team analyses where the truck will operate, what and how much it will be carrying, the routes it will follow, the road conditions and gradients it will encounter and the required range between fills. If required, we’ll even travel those same routes to gain the necessary understanding firsthand.
These details shape the truck’s specification, guiding our recommendation of model, engine, cooling package, chassis rail, transmission, axles, suspensions, fuel tank configuration, cab layout and thousands of other configurable options. The result is a Kenworth. A premium, heavy-duty truck that incorporates 40+ years of local experience and application-specific knowledge, and is purpose-designed to deliver optimum productivity, optimum fuel economy and optimum durability.
Built entirely by Kenworth, using Kenworth-specified components fitted to factory standards honed over 90 years globally, it’s a truck that will also deliver optimum re-sale value and ultimately, a lower cost of ownership.
WE BUILD QUALITY INTO KENWORTHS BY BUILDING IT INTO EVERY STAGE OF OUR MANUFACTURING PROCESS AND EVERY STAFF MEMBER’S JOB DESCRIPTION
THERE’S NO NEAR ENOUGH. NO COMPROMISE. FROM THE FACTORY FLOOR, TO THE FRONT OFFICE, EVERYONE IS A QUALITY INSPECTOR, AND EVERY AUSTRALIAN-BUILT KENWORTH IS A BETTER TRUCK BECAUSE OF IT
The Kenworth factory is a world-class production facility, committed to continuous improvement through Lean Six Sigma methodology.
Utilising a combination of high-tech and hand assembly, our ability to achieve rigorous quality and efficiency targets while building trucks of almost limitless diversity, has seen us twice named Victorian Manufacturer of the Year, and inducted into the State’s Manufacturing Hall of Fame.
Build quality is driven by people and process. We train factory personnel to be multispecialists, enabling each line person to provide constant, on-the-spot quality inspections. During assembly, and after, each truck is also subject to exhaustive examination by Kenworth product auditors and regularly by those from PACCAR in The United States. It can mean thousands of painstaking checks for a single truck, but that’s what it takes to make a Kenworth.
Our build efficiency derives from assembling every Kenworth model on the one production line. An outcome achieved through multispecialist personnel, plus ongoing innovation and flexibility in plant layout, tooling, component design, access and fitment, and automated processes such as robotic spray painting.
With the iconic ‘bug’ on their grille and our network of independently owned dealerships behind them, Kenworth customers in Australia, New Zealand and Papua New Guinea can have absolute confidence throughout their journey.
Comprising more than 50 regional and metropolitan locations, our long-established Australian network spans the country, providing a seamless ownership experience. Depending on location, customers can purchase their Kenworth, arrange finance through PACCAR Financial – a specialist transport industry lender – and access servicing and parts, all from the one dealership.
En route, they can also summon roadside assistance from the nearest dealership 24/7 with one call to PACCAR Assist. Should emergency repairs be required, every dealership has access to an online build list of every Australian-made Kenworth, and with the ‘whatever it takes’ attitude of the PACCAR Parts Distribution Centre, will have the required replacement parts fast and the truck back on the road not long after.
Kenworth dealerships are similarly united in their commitment to constant improvement. Through ongoing investment in infrastructure, systems and staff training, our dealerships continue to provide state-of-the-art facilities, optimum parts inventories, specialist tooling
KENWORTHS ARE CONSTANTLY EVOLVING. SOMETIMES VIA SMALL BUT SIGNIFICANT ADVANCES. AT OTHER TIMES IN GIANT, MARKET-REDEFINING LEAPS.
ONLY WHEN A TECHNOLOGY IS PROVEN LOCALLY, RELEVANT AND DURABLE BEYOND DOUBT, WILL YOU FIND IT ON A KENWORTH.
As evidenced throughout our 40+ year history, Kenworth Australia is uniquely positioned to bring relevant, reliable and timely innovations to our customers.
Staying close in every sense to our ‘family’ of Kenworth owners, operators, drivers and
dealers, we are able to learn and respond to their real world observations, needs and ideas. Not just in kind, but through the evaluation, development, validation and implementation of design improvements that continually enhance the customer experience.
As part of PACCAR, we also have direct access to global research and development programs and vast technical expertise. We can identify the best practice innovations appropriate to our markets, adapt and prove them for local conditions, then bring them to market knowing the technology will stand the test of time.
This alignment of international resources and local experience is responsible for the light but strong high tensile steel chassis frame that minimises Kenworth tare weights. The eight-bag air suspension that optimises driveline life. The aerodynamic body styling that dramatically increases fuel economy. And the Electronic Brake Safety Systems that help drivers maintain control during emergency braking.
They are innovations that translate directly into safer, more productive and more profitable long-term operation. On a Kenworth, you would expect nothing less.
It matters not who you are, or the role for which you’ve been recruited. When you join Kenworth as a PACCAR employee, your first 2–4 weeks are spent on the production line – building the trucks that carry our name and reputation.
An immersive, highly influential induction, it creates a lasting appreciation for our purpose, our products, the skills required to build them and the critical role each staff member plays in delivering a truck of Kenworth quality. And in the process fosters an enduring, company-wide camaraderie.
From that common starting point, a range of career pathways open up. We encourage all staff to develop new skills through exposure to different tasks, or sections of the company. This allows individuals to discover their area of greatest interest or ability, and allows us to support them in pursuing relevant careers through training and further education.
Indeed, PACCAR invests more than 32,000 hours each year on staff training, and as a registered training organisation, delivers nationally accredited certificate and diploma level courses on a range of relevant topics. An investment that enables us to fill 55% of job vacancies internally.
This commitment to our workforce has not gone unnoticed – PACCAR has twice been named Victorian Employer of Year – nor is it unreciprocated. Employees stay with our company longer and dedicate themselves wholly to building the world’s best trucks for our customers.