Preliminary North American Class 8 net orders in April were 33,500 units, down 16% from March, but a whopping 689% higher than April of last year’s COVID-stricken intake, according to ACT Research.
NA Classes 5-7 demand, with orders at 27,300 units, slipped 15% from March. Demand in this segment also enjoyed an easy year-ago comparison, besting April 2020 by 269%.
Complete industry data for April, including final order numbers, will be published by ACT Research in mid-May.
ACT’s State of the Industry: Classes 5-8 Vehicles report provides a monthly look at the current production, sales, and general state of the on-road heavy and medium duty commercial vehicle markets in North America. It differentiates market indicators by Class 5, Classes 6-7 chassis and Class 8 trucks and tractors, detailing activity-related measures such as backlog, build, inventory, new orders, cancellations, net orders, and retail sales.
“For the past several months, we have been counting down the remaining open Class 8 build slots in 2021,” said Kenny Vieth, ACT’s president and senior analyst. “For that exercise, we use three numbers: year-to-date Class 8 build, the Class 8 backlog analysis from ACT’s State of the Industry report, and a materials-shortage-constrained 2021 forecast.
“We start with that preamble to highlight that it is not a surprise that Class 8 orders fell to their lowest level since September and that the decline was strictly driven by the supply of open build slots in 2021, rather than a change in new equipment demand.”
Regarding the heavy-duty market, Vieth said: “While orders moderated in April, the three- and six-month net order SAARs highlight the strength of demand, at 472k and 488k, respectively. Like Class 8, April’s Classes 5-7 net orders moderated, even as activity remained at high levels.”
ACT Research is recognized as the leading publisher of commercial vehicle truck, trailer, and bus industry data, market analysis and forecasts for the North America and China markets. ACT’s analytical services are used by all major North American truck and trailer manufacturers and their suppliers, as well as banking and investment companies.
More information can be found at actresearch.net.