The SGKV was founded in 1928 in view of the entry of truck technology into the long-distance traffic. On one part, the goal consisted in better articulating the interests of the dominant rail freight traffic in politics and in public, on the other part, the SGKV initially researched small bulk containers for transshipment between rail and road in order to optimize the function of the rail for long-distance traffic and the distribution function of trucks. For this purpose the association kept a research institution. In the 1930s, the active research facility members were quickly drafted for military service as replenishment. After the war years, during which the SGKV did not continue to operate, the association was newly established on December 9th, 1948. The object and purpose of the association is clearly described in the statutes:
The association’s purpose is to research and strengthen the rational connections of transport on an internal and intercompany level, as well as the national and international traffic and transshipment. In that context one of the tasks consists in collaborative planning, preparation, coordination, and carrying out to avoid unnecessary duplication of work effort, further, the summarizing of work results regarding Combined Transport.
The SGKV pursuits this purpose especially by initiating actively, by modifying and distributing stocktaking, economy-oriented requirement-research, and national and international norm preparations. Further, this goal is achieved through the clarification and preparation of German contributions to interstate and supranational regulations. In 2008 the SGKV moved from the longstanding headquarters in Frankfurt-am-Main to Berlin, also, to better fulfill the function of a political consultant to the Federal Ministry of Transport and Digital Infrastructure (BMVI).