Demand for commercial vehicles was robust in October as 67,900 total NA Classes 5-8 orders were booked, up 50% from a year ago, according to ACT Research. Over the past 12 months, North American Classes 5-8 net orders have totaled 563,600 units, representing the strongest 12-month period of NA Classes 5-8 order placement since the 12 months ending January 2007.
“The 46,200 NA Class 8 net orders in October (43.2k seasonally adjusted) represent the convergence of a number of trends that continue to drive healthy order activity,” said Kenny Vieth, ACT’s president and senior analyst. “Those trends include pent-up demand amongst small and medium fleets, superior new truck fuel economy, improved economic activity in key freight sectors, and most importantly, rising freight rates and fleet profitability.”
Vieth added that October’s preliminary 21,700 NA Classes 5-7 net orders was the best medium-duty vehicle order volume since April, up 14% compared to last October and up 11% sequentially. “October marked the second consecutive positive y/y order comparison after soft orders from May to August,” he said. “On a seasonally adjusted basis, October’s orders are slightly lower than actual at 19,400 units, but like actual are the best month since April.”
Through year-to-date, Classes 5-7 net orders have been booked at a 218,300 unit annual rate (218.4k SAAR).