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Gather eight superbly manufactured trailers, all built to fulfil different functions, and try picking one out that you think is outstanding. As our team of intrepid judges will confirm, it's no easy task.
Tidd Trailer's sleek StreamLiner certainly turned their heads, while the excellent welding and thoughtful innovation on Wisbech Bulk's tipper made it an outstanding entry.
The new locking mechanism on Crane Fruehauf's superb sliding-bogie skeletal greatly impressed the judges and there were two quite exceptional tankers in the frame: Metalair's super new tipping tanker and Feldbinder's gem of a powder tanker. Although TCT-Chereau's entry lacked sparkle it too had many fine attributes.
Finally, after a great deal of sometimes heated discussion and deliberation, a short list of two were left in the running.
Tidd Trailer's commendable Rak-Pak trailer for dangerous chemical packages addresses all the issues on safe carriage and has a huge potential. Transporter Engineering's superbly built Nine Plus car carrier has been fine-tuned in just about every problem area—its redesigned rear suspension and axles gives much more clearance to drive through the tail end.
The arguments were vociferous and finely balanced and Tidd's Rak-Pak took the outright winner right to the line. But for its innovative redesign, high carrying potential and quite exceptional build quality, the Commercial Motor Trailer of the Year for 1996 is Transport Engineering's Nine-Plus Car Transporter.