Truck sales still slumping

Aug. 5, 2002
Despite projections of a rise in truck orders this year and an increase in truck manufacturing rates, new truck sales continue to decline compared to last year's figures. According to Ward's Communications, new Class 1-8 truck sales for the first half of 2002 declined 2% compared to the first half of 2001, dropping to 3.93 million units from 4.01 million units. Class 8 sales were down 9.9%, dropping
Despite projections of a rise in truck orders this year and an increase in truck manufacturing rates, new truck sales continue to decline compared to last year's figures.

According to Ward's Communications, new Class 1-8 truck sales for the first half of 2002 declined 2% compared to the first half of 2001, dropping to 3.93 million units from 4.01 million units.

Class 8 sales were down 9.9%, dropping to 66,730, despite predictions of an increase in pre-buy orders to avoid purchasing trucks equipped with new low-emission diesel engines after October 1.

Class 4 sales have been down through June, declining 31.7% to 20,682. Class 7 sales were off 22.3%, dropping to 39,378. Class 3 sales went down 17.4% to 38,718, Class 6 down 8.3% to 19,921 and Class 5 fell 5.3% to 12,216.

Light truck sales were mixed, with Class 1 sales, dropping 3.5 % to 2.48 million. Class 2 sales posted the only increase, rising 3.9% to 1.25 million units.

Ward's had to revise its first quarter truck sales numbers after DaimlerChrysler's Dodge unit said it had mistakenly reported Class 2 trucks in the Class 3 category. In all three months of the first quarter, Ward's noted big increases in Class 3 sales. But that data was questioned by many industry observers, especially the National Truck Equipment Assn. (NTEA).

Class 3 sales were reported to have grown in January, February and March at rates of 59.3%, 82.1% and 65.5%, respectively. Following the revision, Class 3 rates were shown to have declined by 16.9%, 18.5% and 22.6%, respectively.

About the Author

Sean Kilcarr | Editor in Chief

Sean previously reported and commented on trends affecting the many different strata of the trucking industry. Also be sure to visit Sean's blog Trucks at Work where he offers analysis on a variety of different topics inside the trucking industry.

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