The news that Roger Penske had decided to pull out of the Australian Supercar Championship and his six year partnership with Dick Johnson Racing sent rumours about a possible imminent departure from the Australian truck industry for the Octogenarian business magnate, writing off the experience and the seven years Penske has been building the brand downunder as a bad decision and a hard win lesson.
However in the wake of the withdrawal from DJR Team Penske and all the speculation, president of Penske Australia and New Zealand. Randall Seymore has come out strongly re stating the company’s commitment to the Australian on and off highway business.
“Since Team Penske partnered with Dick Johnson to form DJR Team Penske six years ago, we have seen tremendous success on the track and in the boardroom,” said Seymore .
“We thank DJR Team Penske for helping to make Penske and our brands household names, and we look forward to remaining Dick Johnson Racing’s biggest fans.”
“Since establishing its footprint in the Australian and New Zealand markets in 2013, Penske continues to invest heavily in its on- and off-highway operations, he added.
“Penske Australia and New Zealand remains dedicated to our customer base, our more than 1,000 employees, and our OEM partners,” continued Seymore.
“The growth of our business and loyalty of our employees, even during these challenging times, has been extraordinary.
“Building on several significant wins recently in key markets such as road transport, energy solutions, defence, and mining, we foresee a standout year for the business in 2021.
“Our team at Penske Australia and New Zealand will continue to build on our customer partnerships in 2021 and beyond, providing them with world-class customer service, along with our portfolio of superior products,” he concluded.
Some speculation has been rife that Western Star, a Daimler owned truck brand may at some point be relinquished to Daimler Trucks Australia and that its Detroit Diesel engine sales and service operation may also be rolled into a consolidated Daimler Trucks Australia operation.
Similarly MAN, which Penske distributes in Australia, is currently under a root and branch global restructure under its parent company Traton, which is Volkswagen’s truck subsidiary and some believe the German brand may find itself in a consolidated Traton Australia portfolio, along with its Swedish sibling, Scania.
In the longer term, the relatively small Australian commercial vehicle market may prove to be of a decreasing interest to Penske Corporation , which purchases more trucks in its native USA each year than are sold in the entire Australian market every 12 months. Penske’s truck rental and leasing operation in the USA maintains a fleet of more than 320,000 trucks , while Penske’s Australian operation currently accounts for only about two per cent of the company’s global revenue.