Wild West Express Goes Electric with Thermo King's New TriPace APU System

Based in Las Cruces, N.M., Wild West Express can trace its history back 30 years, when the family-owned trucking business began hauling hay and grain. After branching out into the refrigerated business 12 years ago, Wild West is now recognized as an innovator in the industry.

Embracing greater efficiency and the latest technology, Wild West has chosen to equip its sleeper cabs with battery-based electric auxiliary power unit (APU) systems in order to cut operating and maintenance costs and address pollution concerns. The company tested several models, including the all-new TriPace system, over the past several months. In the end, Wild West Express chose the new Thermo King system.

"The TriPace has done a great job," said Woody Crawford, Wild West vice president. "We haven't had any downtime with the unit and are very pleased with the performance."

The TriPace APU system delivers clean, reliable power to keep drivers cool and comfortable while running quietly and emission-free, all while saving fuel and maintenance costs. The system runs on batteries, which are charged by the tractor's alternator while driving. Charge and discharge flow are controlled and optimized with Thermo King's patented Smart Charging Module technology. Heat and the plug-in shore power are both available options.

"At Wild West we prefer Thermo King equipment over other equipment because of it greater dependability," said Crawford. "After testing several battery-based APU systems, we chose the TriPace because of that dependability and because of our previous positive experience with Thermo King's engine-based TriPac systems."

Wild West runs 105 refrigerated trailers with Thermo King units, which amounts to more than 95 percent of its refrigerated fleet. The company has built a solid relationship with Thermo King West, Inc., the local Thermo King dealer in El Paso, Texas.

Thermo King's dealer network is very supportive, and Thermo King West has been a great partner in business," said Crawford. "I couldn't ask for a better person to deal with locally than DJ Garcia at Thermo King West. We look forward to purchasing more new equipment this year."

More information on the TriPace can be found at

Thermo King Corporation, a business unit of diversified industrial firm Ingersoll Rand Company Limited, was founded in 1938 and manufactures transport temperature control systems for a variety of mobile applications, including trailers, truck bodies, buses, shipboard containers and railway cars. The company operates 10 manufacturing facilities and 17 parts distribution centers worldwide. Sales and service is provided by a global dealer network of 865 independently owned companies in 75 countries.

Mike O'Brien, Thermo King Corporation
Mike O'Brien

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