1. It will be a slow year for new product introductions from the Big 4 (Daimler, PACCAR, Volvo, International). 2016 will be big for them all.
2. After more than three decades of development, electronically controlled transmissions will see significant market share for new vehicles.
3. EPA, NHTSA and CARB will announce new, proposed regulations for Greenhouse Gas (GHG) and fuel consumption, generating a furor in the industry.
4. FMCSA will finalize the Electronic Logging Device requirement. The race for putting such devices into a commercial vehicle is already underway. Having to have a computer in the vehicle will start a race for features similar to engine controls in the 90’s and smartphones with apps in the last decade.
5. NHTSA will finalize regulations for speed limiters and stability control setting up an issue with the timing for vehicle OEMs focused on the 2017/2018 GHG requirements.
6. It certainly looks as if the cyclical nature in the trucking industry won’t see the downturn in 2015. But we’ve all seen order boards disappear in a short amount of time. With 2016 an election year, the state of the economy late in 2015 and early 2016 will have a big effect on Washington.
7. Oil will cost money. That’s about all I can predict. No one knows how much they will have to pay.