The Environmental Protection Agency’s Office of Inspector General (OIG) has decided a 2017 study of glider kit trucks was consistent with agency standards.
Environmental activists and truck manufacturers have frequently criticized glider kit trucks, which combine new truck bodies with old engines. These engines are usually rebuilt and do not often meet federal emissions standards. The study in question determined glider trucks can emit up to 450 times more diesel particulate matter than new trucks. However, its validity was called into question in 2018 over concerns regarding the involvement of Volvo trucks, who donated vehicles for the study. Volvo has long been a proponent of reducing the number of gliders manufactured annually.
Despite concerns, the OIG determined the EPA acted within reason in completing the research. This comes as a blow to those advocating the repeal of a 2016 regulation that capped the number of gliders each manufacturer could build to 300 per year. The nations largest builder of glider trucks, Fitzgerald Glider Kits, was producing as many as 5,000 per year before the regulations took effect.