Journal class

Despite economic headwinds, truck orders persist

Net orders for Class 8 trucks reached 21,600 units in August, according to preliminary data released by ACT Research, a signal that “despite heightened economic uncertainty, carrier profitability and unmet demand continue to support activity. “, said Eric Crawford, vice president and vice president of ACT. Senior Analyst.

In July, order activity was the weakest for the month since 2019, with OEMs essentially running out of build slots for this year. Additionally, continued supply chain disruptions are limiting 2022 production and fluctuating material and component costs have resulted in delays in confirming orders for shipment next year.

August order intake reflects a 98% improvement over July and FTR Vice President of Commercial Vehicles Don Ake noted that most OEMs have started taking a limited number of orders for the first quarter of 2023 and it looks like OEMs are back to the Q1 pattern. this year when orders averaged 21,100 units.

“The good news is that the traditional drop in summer orders ended a month earlier this year,” Ake said. “OEMs have felt the need to start filling their first quarter production schedules for their major customers. The supply chain is still tight, so they are still not able to meet all the commitments they they still have.

Crawford noted that using August preliminary orders and corresponding OEM build plans from ACT’s August State of the Industry Report: NA Class 5-8 Vehicles (July data ) suggest that “the Class 8 backlog is expected to decline by approximately 8,900 units when full August data is released (less than the 12,400 average decline of the prior 3 months),” it said. -he declares.

Ake expects total orders to increase in the coming months as all OEMs fill all first quarter build slots, adding that “fleet needs still far exceed OEM production capacity under current restrictions.

“The economy has slowed and freight growth has slowed, but there is still a significant amount of pent-up demand due to ongoing supply chain delays,” Ake said. “Some fleets have run their trucks well beyond their planned replacement cycles and are in desperate need of new trucks. The industry has responded well to supply shortages, but will need increased production in 2023 to start balancing.