May truck orders jump 14%, annualize to 343K units

Jason Cannon

June 3, 2014

oimg copyPreliminary data for the month of May show truck orders North American Class 8 truck net orders at 25,605 units, a 14 percent year-over-year increase – the strongest May since 2006

Class 8 orders have logged 16 consecutive months of year-over-year increases.

“The positive performance of Class 8 orders in May met our expectations with the volume right in line with our forecast,” says Don Ake, FTR Vice President of Commercial Vehicles. “The recent order activity confirms that the market has some real strength.”

Backlogs remain at very high levels, and OEMs will continue to increase build rates in response to this growing demand, Ake says.  Class 8 orders for the latest six month period through May annualize to 343,000 units, including an expected summer buying slowdown.

“We do expect Class 8 orders to slow down in the summer as generally is the case, but they will remain above last year’s levels,” Ake adds.

Last week, citing increased demand for trucks, Cleveland Research Company, an independent equity research firm headquartered in Cleveland, Ohio, raised its 2014 North American heavy truck build forecast by 10,000 units.

Year-to-date, sales of Class 8 trucks are up 9 percent from 2013, according to the most recent data from ACT Research.

“This is the year when North American Class 8 truck sales are projected to reach the highest levels within the past  six to seven years,” says Sandeep Kar, global director of research, automotive and transportation for global consulting firm Frost & Sullivan. 

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