Multi-Colored Kenworth T680s are Spec’d to the Nines for Drivers
When Matt Blinsky was asked the company’s fleet color, he answered with a laugh. “That’s a good question. We don’t have one. We’ve got 74 trucks, and probably 25 different colors running around. It’s all by design.”
Matt Blinsky, vice president of Floyd Blinsky Trucking, is shown with three of the company’s Kenworth T680s with 76-inch sleepers, the Driver’s Studio, and PACCAR MX-13 engines.
Operating primarily Kenworth T680s, Yakima, Washington-based Floyd Blinsky Trucking doesn’t believe in conforming to the norm. “We believe in individuality,” said Blinsky, who serves as vice president of the company. Blinsky’s dad, Floyd, started the company in 1977 and is serves as president. Floyd is “semi-retired” with the company. “Every fifth truck comes in a different color, and if you had all our trucks lined up, you’d see a sea of colors. Our drivers love it – you can see our trucks 10 miles down the road.”
According to Blinsky, the company has always had a “driver-first” mentality. “My dad started the operation as driver and grew the business into a small flatbed fleet in Montana,” he said. “He also started buying some refrigerated trailers and got into the business of hauling produce out of Yakima. With an eye on growth, he decided to relocate the business there in 1987, and become predominately a reefer fleet. That way new drivers could spend more time at home.”
That, coupled with a close-knit work environment, Kenworth trucks spec’d to the nines, and no truck older than model year 2015, has helped Blinsky keep driver turnover “well below the industry average,” said Blinsky. “I, too, was once a driver for our company, so my dad and I have always understood the importance of a quality truck to drive. We wouldn’t want to have a driver operate something we ourselves wouldn’t want to drive. And to that point, I still get behind the wheel of a truck, and so does my dad. We both enjoy driving, and I think our drivers like seeing us log some miles. It keeps us grounded.”
Most of Blinsky’s runs are to the Midwest – hauling produce, meat, cheese, and frozen vegetables east, and backhauling food grade products back. The 59 Kenworth T680s with 76-inch sleepers are spec’d with the Driver’s Studio, 455-hp PACCAR MX-13 engine and 13-speed transmissions. The company also has 15 day cabs for local deliveries, plus it operates a small flatbed operation in the Yakima area. The T680s were purchased through Kenworth Northwest – Yakima.
“We’ve got the premium Driver’s Studio with the Diamond VIT package, leather interior, top of the line seats, drawer-style refrigerator, inverter, and TV installation package,” said Blinsky. “We also love the swivel passenger seat and fold out table, and there is plenty of storage for our drivers, who are typically out seven to 10 days. We love the way the T680s drive, and they’re so quiet with the PACCAR MX-13 engine.”
The efficiency and reliability of the Kenworth T680 and PACCAR MX engine is also a huge plus for Blinsky. “Before we made the switch to Kenworth in 2011, we ran another brand and were having engine issues; those trucks had a lot of downtime,” said Blinsky. “We’ve been very happy with the PACCAR MX engine. We were one of the first customers in our area to run with it, and it’s been a good decision.”
PACCAR MX-13 engine
Blinsky said the Kenworth T680 and PACCAR MX-13 engine are getting about a 15 percent boost* in fuel economy compared to his previous non-Kenworth trucks. “That’s meant more than a $6,500 a year savings in fuel, per truck,” he said. “And we’re taking full advantage of Kenworth’s TruckTech+ remote diagnostics. It’s great that we get email alerts to any issues with the trucks. And, we don’t have to a technician on hand to understand what the text means. The description of the problem is very clear and straight forward, and it lets us know where the closest Kenworth dealer is in case we need to drive for service.”
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Kenworth Truck Company is the manufacturer of The World’s Best® heavy and medium duty trucks. Kenworth’s Internet home page is at www.kenworth.com. Kenworth is a PACCAR company.