Leadway upbeat on semi-trailers

leadway upbeat on semi-trailers

Mr Chakart sees an opportunity to sell electric semi-trailers as the Thai EV market is growing.

Leadway Heavy Machinery Co, a manufacturer of excavators and pavers, has set a target to sell 200 battery-powered semi-trailers in the first quarter of next year as it aims to benefit from the growing electric vehicle (EV) market in Thailand.

The company aims to be the market leader in semi-trailers, which will be imported from China, said Chakart Seanchan, chief executive of Leadway Heavy Machinery.

“We are preparing to launch electric semi-trailers later this year,” he said.

The company expects a good market response because the trailers are powered by clean energy and they can be used in many industries, ranging from transport and logistics to mining.

In order to allay concerns over the time taken to charge large vehicles, Leadway Heavy Machinery joined hands with Global Power Synergy Plc, the power generation arm of PTT Plc, to jointly invest in battery-swapping facility development, aiming to serve entrepreneurs in industrial zones.

Leadway Heavy Machinery is running a pilot project serving semi-trailers running between the Inland Container Depot in Bangkok’s Lat Krabang district and the industrial area in Laem Chabang in Chon Buri, a distance of 200 kilometres.

Semi-trailer drivers with low battery levels can replace them with fully charged batteries, without needing to spend time on charging.

“At a battery swapping station, a semi-trailer needs only 1.9 minutes to swap batteries. It is so speedy,” said Mr Chakart.

Each battery swapping station can serve up to 100 vehicles.

Leadway Heavy Machinery expects its total revenue to reach 5-6 billion baht between 2023 and 2027, with 2-3 billion baht coming from sales of large EVs.

“For fiscal 2022, we expect total revenue of 2.8 billion baht,” said Mr Chakart.

According to the company, the heavy machinery market is valued at 50-60 billion baht this year. The value is believed to remain the same next year.

Mr Chakart said he believes flooding will boost sales of heavy machinery because many areas, damaged by the water, will need the machines for road repair and building reconstruction.