For 90 years, we've been guided by a single, enduring vision: Building the World's Best.
In 1923, H.W. Kent and E.K. Worthington rolled their first production Kenworth out the door. From that day forward, Kenworth has continued to forge a reputation for craftsmanship, durability and engineering excellence that is unrivaled in the world today.
The company becomes Kenworth after the two principal stockholders, Harry Kent and Edgar Worthington. Headquarters are established in Seattle.
In 1924 the company sells 80 trucks. The next year production nears two trucks per week. Customization becomes the Kenworth hallmark.
Harry Kent becomes President and steady growth leads to opening of a new factory in Seattle.
In 1933 Kenworth becomes the first American truck
manufacturer to install diesel engines as standard equipment and the first sleeper cabs are introduced.
After Pearl Harbor, Kenworth begins production of M-1 "wreckers," heavy-duty six wheel drive vehicles armed with special equipment for combat conditions. In 1943 the company begins to produce components for the B-17“Flying Fortress” and the B-29 "Super Fortress" aircraft.
Pacific Car and Foundry buys Kenworth. Paul Pigott strikes a deal with the owners and Kenworth becomes a wholly owned subsidiary of Pacific Car and Foundry.
Kenworth is still producing military as well as commercial vehicles. Sugar plantations in Hawaii become large customers. In 1946 a new Seattle factory is opened and by 1950 foreign sales account for 40 percent of sales.
Kenworth produces the 853 for work in the oil fields of the Middle East and the 801 for earth moving in America. In 1955 the radical cab-beside-engine design is launched and becomes an instant hit.
The 900 series is introduced and a fleet successfully transports 3,000 tons of equipment and supplies to the northern Yukon for oil exploration.
Two new models are introduced. The W900 conventional provides larger cabs and a redesigned instrument panel; the K100 cabover maximizes cargo within state length restrictions. The Kansas City plant opens. The popularity of new models requires production expansion. By the end of the year the company produces a record 2,037 trucks.
50th birthday sales hit the five digit mark for the first time in 1972. In 1974 the Chillicothe, Ohio plant opens.
Kenworth introduces another industry first with the raised-roof AERODYNE sleeper. The new design quickly sets a new standard for driver comfort.
The new T600 improves aerodynamics by 40 percent and changed the industry forever. The radical slope-nosed design saves customers up to 22 percent on fuel compared to traditional conventionals.
On June 4th, 1993 a new facility in Renton, Washington opens to join those in Seattle, Chillicothe, Canada and Mexico. One month afterward, the AeroCab integrated cab/sleeper is unveiled.
Kenworth introduces its first ever medium-duty conventional— the T300. Design is based on the T600
The exciting new T2000 is introduced, setting new standards for performance, comfort and style.
Kenworth introduces the T660, further refining the art of designing aerodynamic highway trucks.
Kenworth begins production of the T700, the most aerodynamic and spacious Kenworth ever built.
Kenworth has designed an outstanding truck that takes the company's long tradition of superior aerodynamics to a new level of achievement. The T680 is designed to smoothly slice through the air, setting an industry standard for aerodynamics and fuel efficiency.