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Global Tow Tractor Market - Outlook and Forecast 2023-2028
In 2022, the global tow tractor market was valued at USD 1.96 billion and is expected to reach USD 2.88 billion by 2028, growing at a CAGR of 6.59% during the forecast period. The growth of e-commerce has led to an increased demand for logistics services, driving the tow tractor market. Additionally, tow tractors are gaining popularity in the manufacturing industry for various purposes. Retailers are investing heavily in tow tractors to improve logistics activities and simplify their work, as these tractors are easy to handle and require less maintenance.
The rise in online purchases, the need for warehouses, and increasing human involvement present challenges in terms of efficiency and productivity. Therefore, warehouses are increasingly adopting automation to minimize repetitive manual tasks. Automated guided carts are becoming popular in moving goods within and outside warehouses due to their financial and operational benefits. The rapid industrialization and applications in the aerospace and retail sectors are key drivers of the tow tractor market.
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USD 2 billion in 2021
Product Type, Sub-Product Type, Load Capacity, Fuel Type, Application, Sales Channel, Geography
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The North American tow tractor market is expected to grow at a CAGR of 6.59% during the forecast period. The region’s import, export trading, and industrial activities support the demand for tow tractors. Manufacturers in the tow tractor market are focusing on improving the run time and power of electric tow tractors. The growing U.S. tow tractor market can be attributed to the development of logistics, transportation, warehousing, food processing, manufacturing, automotive, and e-commerce industries.
Autonomous vehicles have the potential to revolutionize logistics. These vehicles integrate various technologies and can operate without human intervention. Manufacturers are innovating their products to meet customer demands for automatic material handling, enabling the automation of logistics processes in both indoor and outdoor environments. Driverless, electric tow tractors like TractEasy enable autonomous material handling in logistics processes and airports. The demand for autonomous tow tractors is expected to increase during the forecast period.
The aviation industry encompasses various aspects of air travel, including airlines, aircraft manufacturing, research companies, and military aviation. Aircraft towing is crucial for daily operations at airports worldwide, and towing equipment ensures the safe movement of aircraft on the ground. As the aviation industry expands, the usage of aircraft towing equipment increases, supporting the global tow tractor market.
Raw materials are the largest cost component in the tow tractor market. The prices of raw materials such as steel, plastic, and rubber have increased significantly in recent years, posing a challenge to manufacturers’ profit margins. Labor costs have also risen substantially. The increasing cost of raw materials adds an additional 5-7% to the manufacturing cost, reducing profitability. Manufacturers are striving to produce efficient tow tractors at reasonable prices to cope with rising competition in the market.
The market is segmented based on various factors, including product type, sub-product type, load capacity, fuel type, application, sales channel, and geography.
Segmentation by Product Type
Segmentation by Sub-product Type
Segmentation by Load Capacity
Segmentation by Fuel Type
Segmentation by Application
Intralogistics & Warehousing
Food & Beverages
Segmentation by Sales Channel
Segmentation by Geography
North America – US, Canada
Europe – Germany, France, UK, Italy, Spain
APAC – China, Japan, India, South Korea, Australia
Latin America – Brazil, Mexico, Argentina
Middle East & Africa – South Africa, Saudi Arabia, UAE
The manual tow tractor market is projected to dominate the global market due to its extensive use in various industries. In 2022, the global manual tow tractor market was valued at USD 1.27 billion. This segment includes products that operate on battery, propane, and conventional fuel. Manual tow tractors are available in capacities ranging from 1 to 50 tonnes, with 3- and 4-wheeled chassis options and models for riders, stand-in operators, and pedestrians, suitable for both indoor and outdoor use. These tow tractors are commonly used in large-scale operations, particularly in the aerospace and large manufacturing sectors. They are particularly popular in Europe, where energy efficiency is heavily emphasized by the government.
The global tow tractor market is divided into three sub-product types: rider-seated, stand-in, and pedestrian. In 2022, the rider-seated sub-product type dominated the industry, driven by its widespread use in various industries for advanced order picking, long-distance load transportation, and specialized transports. The global rider-seated tow tractor market is expected to grow at a Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 6.17% during the forecast period. These models are extensively utilized by professional logistics service providers, offering variations in size, fuel type, and engine options. However, the stand-in tow tractors are experiencing significant growth due to the increasing focus on reducing operational costs and enhancing productivity in warehouses and operational plants.
In 2022, the global market for light-duty tow tractors reached a value of USD 750 million and dominated the load capacity segment. This dominance can be attributed to the widespread use of tow tractors in small manufacturing facilities and warehouses. However, heavy-duty tow tractors are gaining momentum in large to medium-sized warehouses and manufacturing facilities. Heavy-duty towing vehicles are well-suited for handling cargo and luggage at airports and heavy-duty industries.
The electric power source segment was the dominant segment in the global tow tractor market in 2022. This can be attributed to the increased usage of electric tow tractors due to their quick and maneuverable features. Additionally, their lower long-run cost, as they eliminate the need for battery replacement, makes them a preferable choice. Furthermore, electric tow tractors are lightweight and require minimal maintenance. The increasing automation of material handling systems in industrial and commercial trades is expected to drive the demand for autonomous tow tractors. These factors contribute to the significant demand for electric tow tractors during the forecast period.
The global intralogistics & warehousing tow tractor market, valued at $713 million in 2022, dominated the application segment. The extensive use of tow tractors in supply chain management is a major driver of segmental growth. Tow tractors utilize different power sources, with some employing traditional combustion engines while others run on electric battery packs. The growing industrial and commercial trades are expected to drive the demand for storage and transportation facilities, thereby significantly driving the demand for tow tractors during the forecast period.
In 2022, direct sales accounted for a revenue share of 62.19% in the global tow tractor market. This segment is expected to witness incremental growth of USD 534.9 million during the forecast period. Factors such as the wider reach in areas with limited connectivity and the high consumer trust associated with personally experiencing the product’s quality contribute to the growth of this segment. Strategic partnerships between vendors and Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) also help reduce operational costs for OEMs, making direct sales to OEMs a prominent segment.
The tow tractor market in the Asia-Pacific (APAC) region experienced robust growth due to growing economies and the establishment of new manufacturing units by global OEMs. In 2022, the APAC region dominated the global tow tractor market with a value of USD 886.41 million. APAC has become the world’s manufacturing hub with the highest adoption rate of industrial robots, which support the warehousing, logistics, and manufacturing sectors. The robot density in China is particularly dynamic, as reported by the International Federation of Robotics (IFR). These factors are expected to drive regional industry growth. Additionally, the growing e-commerce industry in the APAC region is fueling the demand for tow tractors.
The tow tractor market in Europe is projected to grow at a CAGR of 5.93% during the forecast period. The increasing demand for tow tractors in the region can be attributed to the thriving e-commerce business. Europe is home to diverse markets, particularly intricate digital markets. The population’s high internet penetration and continuous growth in online shopping necessitate strong supply management, including warehousing and material handling equipment, thereby driving the demand for tow tractors in the region.
The global tow tractor market exhibits a high level of concentration and is populated by numerous local and international players. However, significant changes in competition are anticipated due to the emergence of several upcoming construction projects in the warehousing, airport, and manufacturing sectors. In order to expand their market reach and cater to a growing customer base, many vendors are actively seeking opportunities to enhance their product portfolios with the latest technologies. Notable participants in the global tow tractor market include Alke, Toyota Material Handlings, Jungheinrich AG, Bradshaw, Eagle Tugs, Hyster-Yale Group, Helge Nyberg, and others.
Manufacturers place great emphasis on identifying industry opportunities, setting specific goals to enhance productivity, and making efficient use of available capital resources. The present market conditions compel vendors to adapt and refine their unique value propositions to establish a robust presence within the industry. By introducing various innovative techniques and expanding their product line-up in respective business segments, manufacturers strive to gain a competitive edge over their counterparts.
Key companies profiled in this report include Jungheinrich AG, Alke, Toyota Material Handling, Other Prominent Vendors, Bradshaw, Eagle Tugs, Helge Nyberg AB, Hyster-Yale Group, Inc., Godrej Material Handling, Linde Material Handling, Motrec International Inc., John Bean Technologies, STILL, Kalmar Motors, VOLK, Spijkstaal International B.V.
Key Questions Answered
What is the size of the tow tractor market?
The global tow tractor market is projected to exceed USD 2.88 billion by 2028.
What is the growth rate of the global tow tractor market?
The global tow tractor market is anticipated to grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 6.59% from 2022 to 2028.
Who are the major players in the global tow tractor market?
The major players in the global tow tractor market include Jungheinrich AG, Alke, and Toyota Material Handling.
What is the projected global tow tractor market share in terms of shipments by 2028?
The projected global tow tractor market share in terms of shipments is expected to reach 226.96 thousand units by 2028.
Which region dominates the global tow tractor market in terms of market share?
In 2022, APAC held the largest global tow tractor market share, accounting for 45.11%. This can be attributed to factors such as increasing urbanization, growing trade investments, and rapid expansion of industries in the region.
What are the significant trends influencing the tow tractor market?
Significant trends impacting the tow tractor market include the rise in logistics service providers, expansion of the aviation industry, and advancements in battery technology.