The History Of Truck-Lite

The History Of Truck-Lite

We've introduced over 250 innovations to the world, but we're never done reinventing ourselves

Our Story

Truck-Lite began with an ingenious idea that sparked a revolution in truck and trailer safety lighting. Tackling the problem of the short life of trailer lights, founder George Baldwin designed the first sealed marker light, using his kitchen sink for quality control. That first light was a commercial success, and Truck-Lite released the industry’s first sealed stop/turn/tail light soon after. Since then, Truck-Lite has grown into an international company with over 3,000 employees.

Truck-Lite has a history of firsts, including the first sealed lighting products, the first LED S/T/T lamps for commercial vehicles and the first LED forward lighting for both military and commercial vehicles. All these firsts represent major industry breakthroughs, but being first isn’t enough. Our goal, from design to installation, is to deliver the best. Our products have been copied time and time again, but our superior quality has never been met by others.

First To Market, Best On The Shelves


  • Truck-Lite is established by development of sealed lighting

  • Introduced first independent grounded wiring system

  • First company in the transportation industry to use polycarbonate material for light housing and lenses

  • Introduced the first sealed wiring harness system

  • Introduced the Super 40, the industry's first sealed and shock-mounted stop/turn/tail lamp

  • Introduced the first full-system lighting and harness written warranty

  • Introduced world’s first LED S/T/T lamp

  • Offered First Lifetime Harness Warranty

  • Introduced the first white LED license, dome, and back-up lights

  • Introduced LED lighting to military market

  • Introduced first LED Headlamp System

  • Introduced world’s first DOT-compliant 7” round LED headlight

  • Introduced the first LED mini marker clearance light

  • Introduced world’s first custom-designed LED headlight for Class 8 trucks

  • Introduced the ROADMAX™ custom LED headlight system for the medium-duty market

  • Introduced Road Ready®, the industry's first true "smart" trailer monitoring system

Making Daylight

We began the initial research into LED forward lighting for the military in 2000. After eight years of development, rigorous testing and military certification, Truck-Lite began deploying LED headlights to the Iraq and Afghanistan theaters during Operation Desert Storm.

We brought headlight technology to the civilian market in 2009, with the world’s first DOT compliant 7” round LED headlight.

In 2012, Truck-Lite commercialized its LED forward lighting product for the heavy-duty truck market, offering the industry’s first customized LED forward lighting for Class 8 trucks.

Moving Forward, Responsibly

Over sixty years of innovation has established Truck-Lite as a globally recognized brand, trusted by users from the largest fleets to smaller owner-operators. As our reputation has grown, so has our global reach.

Our Timeline

  • Truck-Lite is established

  • Acquired Do-Ray

  • Acquired Raydyot (Birmingham, UK), entering the mirror market

  • Truck-Lite acquired the assets of Signal-Stat Lighting Products, gaining manufacturing processes for sealed and bulb-replaceable lighting, turn signals, emergency lighting and vehicle accessories

  • Acquired FER (Eisenach, Germany), establishing European lighting manufacturing

  • Acquired Rubbolite (Harlow, UK), increasing European OEM and aftermarket lighting

  • Acquired Davco (Saline, MI), entering fuel processor business

  • Acquired Rigid Industries (Phoenix, AZ), expanding LED lighting presence