Fontaine Introduces SmartConnect® the World’s First Smart Fifth Wheel

JASPER, AL – Fontaine Fifth Wheel company just unveiled the new SmartConnect® fifth wheel at ATA’s MCE in Austin, TX. The Fontaine SmartConnect® system monitors the fifth wheel lock position at every coupling event and analyzes the gathered data. The system predicts maintenance needs and proactively issues alerts for servicing or inspection. This proactive approach helps prevent premature wear, minimizes the need for early rebuilds, and improves fleet uptime by aligning maintenance with early indications.

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“Think of it as a fifth wheel with a brain,” began Juan Hernandez, VP Sales & Marketing. “It utilizes advanced sensors to monitor the fifth wheel lock position every time you couple or de-couple from a trailer. By collecting and processing this data, it can accurately anticipate maintenance needs before problems surface,” he further explained. “Promptly addressing these issues prevents minor problems from escalating into costly repairs and extends the fifth wheel’s lifespan. In essence, SmartConnect® means less guessing and more uptime,” he concluded.

Shane Wolfe, Director of Engineering, added, “Similar to other fifth wheels, the SmartConnect® system includes an indicator light that notifies the driver of the fifth wheel’s locking status. What truly sets SmartConnect® apart, however, are its predictive maintenance capabilities. LED flash codes provide drivers with advance notice that fifth wheel service is required at the next maintenance interval.”

Hardwire connections not only simplify the installation of an optional in-cab indicator light, they also provide fleets the flexibility to expand SmartConnect® functionality as more features become available. The system is CAN bus capable right out of the box, using the high-level SAE J1939 communications protocol. When integrated with the Truck OEM’s CAN and telematics, SmartConnect® will seamlessly transmit lock status, hours of use, number of couples and maintenance alerts to fleet managers.

“We’re genuinely excited about this product,” says Paige Petroni, company president. “SmartConnect® is the world’s first smart fifth wheel, and I’m incredibly proud of our engineering and management teams for their remarkable accomplishments. This innovation can significantly assist fleets in lowering maintenance costs while elevating operational efficiency.”

For more information about Fontaine Fifth Wheel SmartConnect® products and support – contact Fontaine Customer Service at 800-874-9780 or email


Source: Fontaine Fifth Wheel, October 17th 2023