Preliminary North America Class 8 net order data show the industry booked 14,800 units in April, dropping a moderate 6.2 percent from March, but down 57 percent from year-ago April (note: numbers are preliminary). Complete industry data for April, including final order numbers, will be published by ACT Research in mid-May.
“We continue to contend that current order weakness has more to do with very large Class 8 backlogs and orders already booked, than with the evolving supply-demand balance,” said Kenny Vieth, ACT’s President and Senior Analyst. “Of course, contracting freight volumes, falling freight rates, and strong Class 8 capacity additions suggest that the supply-demand balance will become an issue later this year.”
Regarding the medium duty market, Vieth explained, “While the U.S. manufacturing/freight economy has been droopy since late 2018, the medium-duty market continues to benefit from underlying strength in the consumer economy. In April, NA Classes 5-7 net orders were 23,100 units, down just 6.8 percent year-over-year and up 12 percent from March.”