Complete Guide on 25 Types of Trucks: Names, Functions & Picture

A truck, also known as a lorry, serves as a motorized vehicle crafted for the purpose of transporting goods, handling specialized loads, or performing various practical tasks. Trucks come in various sizes, power capabilities, and configurations. Yet, the majority follow a body-on-frame construction approach. It means that the cabin where the driver sits is distinct from the part of the vehicle responsible for carrying cargo. Some smaller types of trucks might share mechanical similarities with certain types of automobiles. Commercial trucks, on the other hand, can be bigger and possess significant power. They can also be adapted to accommodate specialized equipment for specific tasks. Examples of such types of trucks include refuse trucks, fire trucks, concrete mixers, and suction excavators.

As of now, a large portion of trucks still rely on diesel engines for propulsion. However, it’s worth noting that in the United States, Canada, and Mexico, there are smaller to medium-sized trucks equipped with gasoline engines.

The noteworthy trend in the truck industry is the rapid growth of electrically powered trucks. It is anticipated that electric trucks will constitute approximately 7% of the global market by 2027. Interestingly, electric propulsion systems are already dominant in both the largest and smallest truck categories.

Types of Trucks Pictures

Types of Trucks, Names & Pictures

Types of Truck Names

  • Tipper Trucks
  • Pickup Truck
  • Small Truck
  • Tow Truck
  • Boat Haulage
  • Australian Road Train
  • Flatbed Truck
  • Concrete Mixer Truck
  • Refrigerated Truck (Reefer Truck)
  • Fire Truck (Fire Engine)
  • Snow Plows
  • Furniture Truck
  • Logging Truck
  • Highway Maintenance Truck
  • Crane Truck
  • Tanker Truck (Fuel, Chemical, Water)
  • Livestock Truck
  • Trailer Truck
  • Dump Truck
  • Box Truck
  • Flat Bed Trucks
  • Military Truck
  • Garbage Truck (Waste Collection Vehicle)
  • Food Truck
  • Haul Truck (Heavy Equipment Transport)

Tipper Trucks

Tipper Truck
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Tipper trucks, or dump trucks, are specialized vehicles. They come with a hydraulic system that allows for the raising and tilting of the cargo bed. It facilitates efficient unloading at the rear. These cargo containers are characterized by their open-top design.

Additionally, they are equipped with hinged sides called tailgates. These tailgates serve to control the discharge of materials during the dumping process.

Tipper trucks find extensive usage in environments like quarries, mines, and construction sites. They play a pivotal role in transporting and disposing of loose materials like sand, gravel, and soil. The range of tipper trucks varies widely.

It spans from compact single-axle configurations to expansive articulated counterparts. These larger vehicles have multiple axles and trailer attachments. This diversity in size and structural arrangements allows tipper trucks to meet diverse operational needs.

Pickup Truck

Pickup Truck

A CA pickup truck is a light-duty motor vehicle with a rear open cargo compartment designed for transporting goods and construction materials. It is suitable for a wide array of tasks, spanning from trailer hauling to the conveyance of tools and machinery.

The pickup trucks have towing capabilities, which facilitate the towing of trailers and other vehicles with remarkable ease. People also prefer these vehicles for recreational purposes like camping and off-road adventures.

Pickup trucks are available with diverse propulsion systems, encompassing gasoline and diesel engines. They exhibit varying dimensions and configurations, encompassing compact and full-size models.

Small Truck

Small Truck

A small variant of the full-size pickup truck is commonly referred to as a compact or small truck. Manufacturers engineer these small trucks for tasks that involve reduced weight-bearing significance, such as urban commuting, transporting modest cargo loads, or recreational purposes.

Typically, manufacturers equip them with smaller displacement engines and reduce their payload and towing capabilities. They possess a cargo bed of reduced dimensions. In comparison to their full-size counterparts, small trucks present heightened maneuverability and ease of parking within confined spaces. Superior fuel economy characteristics often accompany this.

Individuals who occasionally require truck utility but do not need the expansive towing and cargo-hauling capacities found in larger vehicular alternatives prefer this category of vehicles.

Tow Truck

Tow Truck’Arc_Bash_2016_43_(parade).jpg

A tow truck plays a vital role in ensuring road safety and maintaining traffic flow by relocating immobile vehicles due to breakdowns, accidents, or related issues.

The most prominent variant is the flatbed tow truck. It features a horizontally level, uncovered cargo bed with hydraulic mechanisms for bed elevation and descent.

A winching system or a similar lifting machine is employed to hoist the incapacitated automobile onto the flatbed. The operator uses straps or chains to establish securement and ensure steadfast immobilization during transportation.

Another prevalent type is the hook-and-chain tow truck. It functions by grasping the front or rear axle of the inoperative vehicle and towing it with its wheels using a hook and chain configuration. These tow trucks effectively remove disabled or abandoned vehicles from roadways, ensuring safety and smooth traffic flow.

Boat Haulage

Boat Haulage

Large vehicles like SUVs can carry smaller items. However, when it comes to transporting the heaviest and most prestigious boats, specialized small trucks or dedicated low loaders, known as “boat haulers,” are essential.

Boat haulers are purpose-built to ensure the secure transportation of boats. They feature extended chassis configurations to accommodate boats of varying lengths.

They also have adaptable strapping mechanisms, specialized cradles providing crucial support during transit, and hydraulic lift systems for easier loading and unloading.

Notably, boat transport companies, boat dealers, and manufacturers rely extensively on these specialized boat haulage trucks. They use them to move boats between marinas, transport boats from manufacturers to dealerships, and handle other crucial aspects of the boat transportation process.

Australian Road Train

Australian Road Train

In Australia, the transportation of cargo over vast distances depends on a specialized category of heavy-duty trucks known as Australian Road Trains. These hard vehicles consist of a prime mover, which is a truck pulling a trailer.

They are uniquely designed to be coupled with multiple trailers, typically accommodating four to five in line. The pivotal coupling system employed for this purpose is termed a “dog trailer” or “pup trailer.”

Australian Road Trains are distinguished by their exceptional dimensions. They can reach a length of up to 53.5 meters (175 feet) and a staggering weight of 200 tonnes (440,000 pounds).

These extraordinary dimensions are integral to their role in efficiently transporting cargo across Australia’s remote and challenging terrains, where alternative transportation modes may prove impractical.

Flatbed Truck

Flatbed Truck

A flatbed truck, technically classified as a rigid commercial vehicle, boasts an unenclosed cargo platform devoid of both side walls and a roof. The cargo bed is directly connected to the truck’s chassis, constructed primarily from sturdy metallic materials.

Flatbed trucks primarily provide efficient transportation for a diverse range of commodities and substances that cannot fit within enclosed commercial vehicles such as vans or closed trucks due to their size, weight, or unconventional dimensions.

Flatbed trucks are available in a spectrum of dimensions and configurations to accommodate an array of cargo types.

These specialized vehicles find overall application in industries such as construction, landscaping, and transportation, where the need arises to transport items such as timber, steel girders, unwieldy machinery, and substantial equipment.

Concrete Mixer Truck

Concrete Mixer Truck

Concrete transport vehicles, often referred to as concrete trucks, serve a specialized role in the construction industry. Engineers design these vehicles to transport freshly blended concrete from a concrete batching facility or mixing location to a construction site.

The fundamental structure of a concrete truck encompasses a hydraulic system-driven rotating drum firmly attached to a durable chassis.

The journey begins at the concrete batching plant, where workers load vital components of concrete, such as cement, sand, gravel, and water, into the drum. It initiates a precise mixing procedure aimed at achieving the desired consistency of the concrete mixture.

Set the drum in slow, steady motion to ensure the requisite fluidity of the concrete during transit. Diverse concrete truck variants exist, varying in both size and capacity.

Refrigerated Truck (Reefer Truck)

Refrigerated Truck

This refrigerated truck is purpose-built for the transportation of perishable commodities, such as foodstuffs, pharmaceuticals, and other thermally sensitive products. It incorporates a refrigeration system engineered to uphold a specified temperature range throughout transit.

These specialized vehicles find extensive utilization among food distributors, grocery retailers, and eateries. They cater to the seamless conveyance of fresh or frozen edibles. They come in diverse dimensions and configurations to align with distinct cargo types and transport requisites.

Additionally, they are equipped with an array of safety features designed to ensure the secure and unimpaired transit of cargo.

Fire Truck (Fire Engine)

Fire Truck

A fire apparatus, commonly known as a fire truck, serves as an essential vehicle for transporting firefighting equipment to the scene of a fire incident. Firefighters rely on this specialized vehicle, which carries the necessary gear and protective clothing, to carry out their duties effectively and safely.

In addition to this, the fire truck is equipped with medical aid supplies and advanced two-way communication systems, such as walkie-talkies or two-way radios.

These communication tools enable firefighters to establish rapid and efficient contact with relevant authorities. It facilitates quick decision-making and action during fire emergencies.

Furthermore, the fire truck is equipped with water storage tanks and powerful pumps designed for fire suppression. It offers the versatility of connecting hoses to either the onboard water storage or to a nearby fire hydrant at the fire scene. It ensures a continuous and dependable water supply for firefighting operations.

Snow Plows

Snow Plows
Oregon Department of Transportation, CC BY 2.0

Snowplow trucks are specialized vehicles designed for removing snow and ice from roads, highways, parking lots, and similar paved surfaces. They feature plow blades that operators can mount at the front, rear or both ends of the truck. Typically, operators control these plow blades using hydraulic or manual systems.

The primary function of a snowplow truck is to clear the surface of snow and ice. You can achieve this by adjusting the angle of the plow blade. Depending on the requirements and conditions, you can either completely remove the snow and ice from the surface or push them to the side of the road.

Snowplow trucks play a crucial role during the winter months in ensuring the safety and accessibility of roadways. They are available in various types to handle diverse snow and ice conditions, catering to different types and quantities of snow and ice encountered on roadways.

Furniture Truck

Furniture Truck

A furniture transport vehicle serves the purpose of conveying furniture and domestic chattels. Both individuals and professional relocation enterprises primarily employ it.

These vehicles feature a diverse array of dimensions and interior arrangements tailored to accommodate various categories and volumes of furniture and household items.

These vehicles are equipped with a variety of securing mechanisms to ensure the preservation of the transported articles. These mechanisms encompass tie-down straps, furniture pads, and supplementary protective measures.

Furniture trucks excel in facilitating the expeditious and efficient transfer of substantial and unwieldy objects across extended distances. Simultaneously, they safeguard these controls against potential harm.

Logging Truck

Logging Truck

A logging truck serves the primary function of timber transportation. Specifically, it conveys raw logs from timberlands to processing facilities, typically within the forestry sector. These vehicles come in various configurations.

Some are equipped with abbreviated trailers capable of accommodating only a limited number of logs. In contrast, others feature elongated trailers designed to carry a substantial volume of logs simultaneously.

The latter variants find particular utility in navigating challenging terrains. Off-road conditions, complex serpentine routes, and steep gradients characterize these terrains. Logging trucks typically feature robust powerplants and heavy-duty suspension systems to meet the demands imposed by the size and weight of the logs.

Highway Maintenance Truck

Maintenance crews use specially equipped vehicles for efficient highway maintenance operations. These vehicles feature unique components that enable a single operator to safely and effectively place traffic cones on the highway to delineate specific repair zones.

In addition to their cone placement capabilities, these trucks are equipped with specialized tools and much cargo space. It allows for the transportation of essential materials and equipment required for highway repairs.

Crane Truck – Types of Trucks

Crane Truck

A crane truck features a rear-mounted crane system designed for the efficient handling of large and cumbersome loads. It is particularly essential for tasks beyond manual or alternative tool capabilities.

A proficient operator exercises command over the crane apparatus from the truck’s cab. Alternatively, they can employ a remote control interface. The selection of lifting attachments for the crane depends upon the specific nature of the load.

These attachments contain a range of equipment, such as hooks, chains, and straps. They find application mainly within industries involved in substantial lifting tasks and materials management. These industries include but are not limited to, the construction and mining sectors.

Tanker Truck (Fuel, Chemical, Water)

Tanker Truck

A tanker truck is a universal vehicle in fluid transport. It serves as a primary means for conveying various liquid or molten substances between locations.

These specialized containers routinely transport liquids that are either inert or under pressure, serving singular or diverse purposes. The substantial size of these vehicles renders them operationally demanding. It’s due to their elevated center of gravity.

Livestock Truck – Types of Trucks

Livestock Truck

Livestock trucks, technically known as “livestock transport vehicles,” are purpose-built vehicles designed to transport live animals such as cattle, swine, sheep, and horses. These specialized vehicles display diverse configurations, featuring individualized cages or compartments that are adjustable for controlled containment.

Some advanced models incorporate specialized amenities like ventilation and hydration systems, ensuring the secure and comfortable transit of the animals. Livestock transport vehicles come in various sizes and setups, tailored to accommodate distinct species and varying quantities of animals.

This diversity in design allows for the safe and efficient movement of livestock while meeting specific transportation requirements.

Trailer Truck – Types of Trucks

Trailer Truck

A trailer truck, technically known as a semi-truck or tractor-trailer, comprises a tractor unit and one or multiple trailers connected in tandem. The tractor unit, alternatively termed the cab or cab-over-engine, forms the foremost segment housing the powerplant, driver’s cabin, and various mechanical components.

The trailer displays as an elongated, rectangular enclosure primarily employed for the conveyance of cargo. The nature of these trailers is contingent upon the specific freight category they are designated for. Variations encompass flatbeds, dry vans, refrigerated vans, tankers, and specialized configurations tailored for distinct cargo types.

Dump Truck – Types of Trucks

Dump Truck

A dump truck, often known as a dumper or dump lorry, plays a crucial role in hauling materials like dirt, gravel, and demolition waste for construction and coal transportation. A dump truck has a distinctive open-box bed with rear hinges and hydraulic rams.

These innovative features allow the front of the bed to rise, enabling precise depositing or “dumping” of the cargo on the ground at the delivery spot. This remarkable process sets dump trucks apart in the world of heavy-hauling.

Box Truck – Types of Trucks

Box trucks are characterized by their box-type design, often featuring different cabins separate from the cargo area. In contrast, vans typically exhibit a unified structure.

These vehicles serve as the primary means for conveying various commodities, including furniture, appliances, and parcels. Box trucks are available in a diverse range of dimensions, starting from compact vans to substantial trucks.

These vehicles can be outfitted with specialized amenities to facilitate the efficient process of loading and unloading. These amenities include shelving units, ramps, and other bespoke features.

Flat Bed Trucks – Types of Trucks

A flatbed truck, also known as a flatbed trailer, features a completely level and open platform. It does not have any sides or a roof and is primarily designed for efficiently loading and unloading heavy and oversized cargo.

It’s not suitable for transporting goods susceptible to rain damage or exceptionally large loads requiring extensive space.

Flatbed trucks are often equipped with hooks and securing mechanisms. These facilitate offer a more secure and convenient means of attachment compared to traditional knot tying.

Improper cargo securing can lead to load displacement during transport. It has contributed to the declining popularity of flatbed trucks in recent times. They have gradually become a less favored choice in the transportation industry, marking a departure from their once-prominent status.

Military Truck – Types of Trucks

Military Truck

A military vehicle suitable to any terrestrial mode of military transportation and engagement, encompassing combat machines tailored for or extensively deployed by armed forces.

The majority of military vehicles necessitate adeptness in off-road traversal and often incorporate protective armor, rendering them substantial in mass. Certain variants have caterpillar tracks instead of mere wheels, while others, colloquially known as half-tracks, combine both propulsion mechanisms.

Moreover, select military vehicles to possess many capabilities, engineered for dual deployment on terra firma and aqueous environments and, at times, transitional terrains.

Garbage Truck (Waste Collection Vehicle)

Garbage Truck

A refuse collection vehicle (RCV) is a specialized automotive apparatus meticulously engineered to gather municipal solid waste and then convey it to designated solid waste treatment facilities, such as landfills, recycling centers, or transfer stations.

In the Australian context, they are predominantly referred to as “rubbish trucks” or “garbage trucks.” In contrast, in the United Kingdom, the colloquial nomenclature includes “dustbin lorry,” “rubbish lorry,” or “bin lorry.” Whereas in various other global regions, alternative monikers such as “trash truck” in the United States, “dustcart,” “junk truck,” “bin wagon,” or “bin van” are employed.

These specialized vehicles serve as ubiquitous fixtures within urban environments, proficiently executing the essential task of waste collection, demonstrating their fundamental role in maintaining public sanitation and environmental stewardship.

Food Truck – Types of Trucks

A food truck is a sizeable, mechanized vehicle, typically a van or trailer. It’s designed for the storage, transportation, cooking, preparation, service, and sale of food. The food trucks trace their origins to horse-drawn chuck wagons and lunch wagons.

Within this category, there exists a spectrum. It ranges from those vending frozen or prepackaged victuals, such as ice cream trucks, to those equipped with fully functional onboard kitchens. These kitchens are for the creation of food or the reheating of previously prepared in established commercial kitchens.

These mobile culinary establishments often feature a repertoire of fast-food staples. Examples include sandwiches, hamburgers, and french fries. Regional variations are not uncommon. With the advent of the pop-up restaurant trend in the early 2010s, food trucks have ascended in popularity.

Haul Truck – Types of Trucks

Haul trucks are off-highway, rigid dump vehicles. They’re designed for tough mining and construction environments with high production demands. These trucks efficiently move machinery between different work sites. They have multiple axles for better equipment support.

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