For the third consecutive month, Class 8 truck net orders came in above 40,000 units, said FTR. The firm’s preliminary data for December 2014 showed orders at 43,620 units with broad order strength among OEMS.
Most manufacturers showed “healthy increases from the previous month, indicating an overall vibrant truck market,” FTR said.
Total North American Class 8 truck orders for 2014 equaled 375,000 units, the second highest order year in history (vs. 2004) with fourth quarter orders exceeded only by the first quarter in 2006.
“The market momentum is now feeding on itself with orders once again exceeding expectations in December,” said Don Ake, vice president of commercial vehicles. “Reports are that more than 75% of the larger fleets have their 2015 orders booked. One OEM reportedly has lead times for volume orders out to July. With build slots at a premium, fleets have accelerated orders for 2015 requirements to reserve their places for future deliveries. Some of these orders will inevitably be moved out or even cancelled, but for now the industry is very bullish on the 2015 truck market.”
Final data for December will be available from FTR later in the month as part of its North American Commercial Truck & Trailer Outlook service.