If you’ve ever considered getting a semi-truck with a sleeper cab (sometimes known as a sleeper berth) or modifying your truck to add one, you are in the right place.
In this article, I am going to cover key information that you need to consider when exploring sleeper cabs, including size and layouts, what types of amenities you can expect, major manufacturers and models, and perhaps most importantly, the average cost you can expect to pay.
In the course of providing this info, I will include images of exteriors and interiors, as well as video walkthroughs for various sleeper cabs, all of which should give you a real sense of what these sleeper berths have to offer.
Let’s get into it!
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The information contained in this post is for informational purposes only. It is not a recommendation to buy or invest, and it is not financial, investment, legal, or tax advice. You should seek the advice of a qualified professional before making any investment or other decisions relating to the topics covered by this article.
What is a Sleeper Cab?
A sleeper cab is a space located behind the driver’s area of a semi-truck that typically contains at least a bed and, depending on the level of finishing, other amenities, such as a bathroom, fridge, work station, microwave, TV and so on. Sleeper cabs let long haul truckers sleep in their trucks instead of at a motel, allowing them to meet off-duty time requirements in a convenient and affordable way.
What Amenities Are Included in a Sleeper Cab?
A sleeper cab will always include a bed, but may include other amenities such as a closet, small desk, refrigerator, microwave, and TV. You also have the ability to get an inverter and multiple outlets for power. Storage is often at a premium in sleeper berths, so many have built-in and efficiently designed storage spaces.
Some models also offer red floor lighting or ambient ceiling lights. This allows the driver to have dim lights on without affecting visibility and without lighting up the cab interior.
As for the actual sleeping space, you have several options, including your basic single bed, a larger bed that can fit two people, or even bunk bed options. Manufacturers are constantly trying to make sleeper cabins more comfortable. For example, Volvo offers a reclining bunk option with adjustable positions, which can provide an easy chair feel to your bunk. They also offer USB and 12-volt charging ports for top and bottom bunks
For entertainment, you can have gaming consoles in your sleeper cab or even in-cab satellite TV through providers like EpicVue.
How Much Does a Sleeper Cab Cost?
The price of a brand new semi truck with a sleeper cab from a reputable manufacturer will run between $230,000 to $280,000, depending on the make, model, size, configuration and level of amenities you choose.
If you are just looking for the sleeper cab, you can expect to pay on average around $55,000 for a new one, although that too will vary widely on your level of finishing and customization, etc. Source
Used sleepers can cost significantly less, so that may be an option worth exploring. You can find used sleepers on sites like Usedvending.
What Are the Most Popular Brands of Sleeper Cabs?
Among the major manufacturers of semi-truck sleeper cabs are Volvo, Freightliner, International, Peterbilt, Kenworth and Mack.
As you probably already know, these are major names in the trucking industry and each have solid reputations (although admittedly they have their respective strengths and weaknesses).
But I will not digress into all that. Below is a table listing out some of the most popular brands of truck sleeper cabs and key information for each. Note: Not all sleeper cab models are listed for each brand.
|Brand||Model||Price (New)||Distinguishing Features|
|Volvo||VNL Series||Approx. $230,000||Integrated reclining bunk and robust sleeper control panel.|
|Freightliner||Cascadia||Approx. $230,000||Generous storage and closet space and room for larger appliances|
|Peterbilt||Model 570||Approx. $235,000||Largest mattress in industry, 8 ft headroom clearance, 70 cubic feet storage|
|Kenworth||W900||Approx. $270,000||High end truck offering handcrafted appointments in the interior|
Ok – we’ve got the numbers out of the way. Sleepers are not cheap, for sure, but as mentioned earlier, you can save a lot by buying used.
How Large Are Sleeper Cab Interiors and Beds?
The dimensions of a semi-truck sleeper cab vary widely. Cabin widths generally match the width of the truck, while heights and lengths run across the board, with some low roof models measuring less than 6 feet tall and high roof models that can clear 8 feet. Lengths vary even more, with some customized extended sleeper cabs that can be over 200 inches long.
Bed sizes in sleeper cabs also vary, but generally, Peterbilt and Kenworth have a reputations for offering larger bed sizes. That being said, in most cases, bunks come in a standard twin XL or “long twin” which means that even if you are fairly tall (over 6 feet), you should be able to sleep in relative comfort.
Now, there are some sleeper cabs that are so large, they almost defy logic. These are almost always fully customized builds, but these giants of the road can span far beyond even 200″ and often have really unique features, such as a garage space for motorcycles.
If you want a peek into these gigantic sleepers, check out my article on the topic here, which includes video walkthroughs and more.
Truck Sleeper Cab Interiors [Pictures of Layouts]
Ok, now that we’ve got the numbers out of the way, let’s move on to the eye candy – below are high quality images of the exteriors and sleeper berths for some of these trucks.
Image courtesy of Freightliner
Image courtesy of Freightliner
Can You Customize Your Sleeper Cab?
You can customize your sleeper cab by working with a customization company like ARI Legacy Sleepers, AA Trucker Sleeper or Powerhouse Coaches.
It’s a robust industry and the customization options are pretty impressive. Of course, the more customized and elaborate your design, the more you will have to pay.
Some of the custom designs are quite high-end and luxurious as you’ll see below.
Customized Truck Sleeper Cab Interiors [Pictures of Layouts]
ARI Legacy Sleepers
These guys have some really high end custom designs as well as more off the shelf type options. You can see the various layouts of these custom designs below.
AA Truck Sleeper
Another competitor in this space is AA Truck Sleeper. Here’s are some exterior and interior images showcasing some of their designs.
Powerhouse Coach is yet another player in this area. Below are some shots of their sleeper cabs.
Video Walkthroughs of Sleeper Cabs
Ok, pictures are great, but it’s hard to beat a video when it comes to getting a truer sense of dimensions, space and finishing. To that end, check out these video walkthroughs of various sleeper cabs. These are manufacturer direct models, not custom models, but they are still pretty impressive.
2022 Peterbilt 579 Interior Walkthrough
Volvo Sleeper Interior Walkthrough (Multiple Models)
So there you have it – key information you need when considering a sleeper cab, including cost, amenities, manufacturers and customization options. Hope you found the information helpful!