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The global road transport refrigeration equipment market size stood at USD 3.49 billion in 2019 and is projected to reach USD 4.73 billion by 2027, exhibiting a CAGR of 3.9% during the forecast period.
Road transport refrigeration equipment is a control device that enables the trailer or container (loaded, unloaded, or parked) to switch the product temperature. The engines of these types of equipment are either diesel or electric powered.
High demand for frozen foods and vegetables is a growing trend. It is attributed to the fast and undamaged transportation of meat & dairy and pharmaceutical products through refrigerate trucks. Additionally, developing countries across the globe are emphasizing the construction of cross-continent highway networks for uninterrupted road freight transportation, which is driving the global market growth. Moreover, the replacement of Hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs) with low global warming potential (GWP) refrigerants by major manufacturers is expected to reduce the global warming impacts and contribute to the growth of the market during the forecast period.
Supply Chain Disruption to Reduce Demand for Refrigeration Equipment During COVID-19 Pandemic
COVID-19 pandemic has placed unprecedented stress on transport and logistics as well as a momentous shift in demand. Road transport refrigeration is experiencing a significant impact of COVID-19 as the refrigeration industry as a whole is suffering from less inventory and more demand. Food products mainly meat and dairy products are transported through refrigerated containers via road transport. According to the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), the transportation of refrigerated containers experiences a downfall by 8.0% owing to, the restrictions including, limitations on crew changes, mandatory quarantines, additional screening during transportation. Moreover, in mid-April, the distance covered by trucks in Europe was 24% below normal.
However, manufacturers are hopeful that the global truck refrigeration market will grow exponentially in the coming years attributed to the release of vaccinations, which will help revive and stabilize the situation. Additionally, the Global Cold Chain Alliance (GCCA) stated that the responding manufacturers are optimistic about the successful operations regarding truck refrigeration. Moreover, the cold chain emissions are expected to be reduced through inventions such as all-electric transport refrigeration equipment and low global warming potential (GWP) refrigerants.
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High Demand for Frozen Foods to Spur Growth
Rising living standards of the middle-class population, resulting in an abundant supply of frozen food, is expected to fuel the demand for truck refrigeration. The evolving lifestyle requires ready to eat and frozen foods owing to hectic day-to-day working is further increasing the demand for frozen food and vegetables.
Furthermore, the development of cold chain logistics and cold chain warehouses in the Middle East and Africa, Latin America, and Asia Pacific have become an essential factor in the growth of road transport refrigeration equipment units in these regions.
Development of Cross-continent Highway Network in Developed Economies to Influence Market Growth
Governments of several developed and developing countries are focusing on constructing cross-continent, cross-country, and cross-regional highways that will allow transporters to move their goods and products in remote areas. Previously, road connectivity between countries and states was extremely strenuous and inconvenient, thus inhibiting the transportation of food and vegetables. The increasing government initiatives for highway construction projects are expected to drive the market in the foreseeable future.
Moreover, companies that manufacture refrigeration equipment for trucks and trailers are developing new products with large capacities.
High Maintenance Cost of Transportation to Hamper Market Growth
Challenging factors such as lack of transport infrastructure in developing countries, a rise in fuel costs, and maintenance of products during transportation are hampering the growth of the global road transport refrigeration equipment market. Moreover, bad road conditions can lead to loose connection and gas leakages, which can further limit its adoption. The gas leakage rate can vary from 20% - 30% per year. In the case of developing countries, ongoing road construction in remote areas result in interrupted transportation, in turn, impeding the market. The rise in fuel costs is also expected to restrain the growth owing to the high operation cost of fuel technologies. However, developed economies are investing heavily in road construction works to minimize gas leakage from transport refrigeration units.
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The Refrigerated Trailers Segment to Hold the Largest Market Share during the Forecast Period
By installing vehicles, the market is divided into vans & light trucks, heavy trucks, and trailers.
The refrigerated trailer is anticipated to witness the largest shares, as it is cost-effective and can store the maximum number of products. It also offers multi-temperature units, allowing transport of different types of goods in a single trip and reducing multi-trip transportation. The vans & light trucks are expected to grow at the highest CAGR during the forecasting period owing to, increasing E-commerce deliveries in developed and developing cities as it can easily transport goods in compact places and narrow urban roads.
Single Temperature Road Transport Refrigeration Equipment to be the Fast-growing Sub-segment
The market is classified into a single temperature and multi-temperature for the mode of operation analysis.
The single-temperature refrigeration equipment dominated the market. The recent introduction and slow adoption of multi-temperature units in most regions have resulted in the slow penetration of multi-temperature refrigeration units in the market. The multi-temperature trailers are expected to cultivate at the highest rate than heavy trucks and light trucks owing to, trailers having more storage ability for different products at different temperatures.
Also, most of the customers of road transport refrigeration equipment units in developed regions are opting for multi-temperature units, even if it operates in single temperature mode to lessen the multi-trip transportation requirements. It is prominently used for urban delivery by incurring fewer transportation costs.
Self-Powered Road Transport Refrigeration Equipment to Dominate the Market
The market based on the power source is categorized into vehicle-powered and self-powered road transport refrigeration equipment.
The market share of vehicle-powered refrigeration units is expected to increase during the forecast period. With the advent of new technologies such as battery-powered and all-electric refrigeration units globally, traditional diesel-powered road refrigeration equipment units are losing their market share every year. Additionally, most businesses are looking to add more fuel-efficient vehicles to their urban delivery fleet.
Food and Beverage Products are Expected to Bolster the Market Growth During the Forecast Period
By application, the global road transport refrigeration equipment market is bifurcated into refrigerated food and beverage, pharmaceutical, and healthcare, and floral products.
Refrigerated food and pharmaceutical applications are anticipated to grow at a rapid rate as the market for frozen & processed food and also pharmaceutical products is expanding rapidly in every region. The global trade of perishable items has increased in the past couple of years spurring the demand for quick cold chain transportation.
North America Road Transport Refrigeration Equipment Market Size, 2016-2027 (USD billion)
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Based on regional analysis, the market is segmented into North America, Europe, Asia Pacific, the Middle East & Africa, and Latin America, which is further drilled down into countries.
North America is expected to hold the highest market share owing to the increasing demand for processed foods, growing investments towards the expansion of the cold supply chain across the U.S. and Canada. Additionally, the trade agencies, organizations, and cold chain associations are emphasizing on developing truck refrigeration networks via an improved governing framework that is complimenting the regional growth of the market.
Asia Pacific offers considerable business opportunities for the cold chain industry, including warehousing and transportation sectors. This growth is likely to be driven by increasing government support & initiatives in the road refrigeration sector and a rise in consumer demand for perishable foods.
In Europe, ~25% of the European population bought food and groceries via online channels, which has resulted in increased demand for truck refrigeration and vans in 2018. Additionally, the construction of the longest trade network from China to Europe, worth ~USD 900.00 Billion and connecting 65% of the global population, is expected to fuel the road refrigeration transport industry
In the Middle East and Africa, Sales at supermarkets/hypermarkets in Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) rose to around USD 70 Billion by 2018. In 2019, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia is forecasted to increase its share of GCC food consumption to 71.4% of sales, demanding more requirements for truck refrigeration equipment.
In Latin America, the rising middle-class population and improving economy in Latin American countries including, Brazil, Mexico, and others are expected to fuel the growth of refrigerated vans, trucks, and trailers.
Prominent Players including, Thermo King, Carrier Transicold, Mitsubishi to Focus on Manufacturing Eco-friendly and Energy-efficient Solutions.
Key players in the market are emphasizing on developing eco-friendly refrigeration units for road transport refrigeration with the limited usage of diesel road transport refrigeration equipment. Moreover, the manufacturers are developing electrical as well as solar-powered and battery-powered refrigeration units to reduce the global warming rate.
Thermo King Plans to Expand its Market Reach by Offering Hybrid Road Transport Refrigeration Unit
Thermo King is emphasizing on expanding its presence across Asia Pacific and Europe by indulging in manufacturing efficiently operated engines with precise temperature control. For instance, in August 2020, Thermo King introduced the ‘T and UT-Series Hybrid refrigeration system’ for high-loaders and trucks that seamlessly switches the diesel and electric mode to operate in low emission zones and residential areas.
An Infographic Representation of Road Transport Refrigeration Equipment Market
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The road transport refrigeration equipment market research report presents a comprehensive assessment of the global market by offering valuable insights, facts, industry-related information, and historical data. Several methodologies and approaches are adopted to make meaningful assumptions and views. Furthermore, the report offers a detailed analysis and information as per segments, helping our readers to get a comprehensive overview of the aforesaid market.
Value (USD billion)
Volume (Thousand Units)
By Install Vehicle
By Mode of Operation
By Power Source
Answer: Fortune Business Insights says the global market was valued at USD 3.49 billion in 2019.
Answer: In 2027, the market is expected to reach USD 4.73 billion.
Answer: The market is expected to exhibit a growth rate of 3.9% during the forecast period.
Answer: The market in North America was USD 1.67 billion in 2019.
Answer: Refrigerated trailers are the leading segment in the market.
Answer: Development of cross-continent and cross-country highway networks is expected to drive the market.
Answer: The top players in the road transport refrigeration market are Carrier Transicold, Thermo King, Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, and Hwasung Thermo.
Answer: North America is expected to hold the highest market share.
Answer: High demand for frozen foods and vegetables across all seasons is the key market trend.
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