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Prime Mover Magazine

Heavy-duty truck sales record broken in the US

Record orders for heavy-duty trucks were realised in the United States last month.

The preliminary tally for July of 52,400 heavy-duty trucks saw a 24 per cent increase on the previous month of 41,800 for Class 8 truck orders.

Continual increases in shipping demand has been behind the record orders as transport companies, buoyed by increasing confidence in the surging economy, look to add trucks to their fleets.

The July numbers represented a 180 per cent increase on the same period in 2017.

While most orders won’t see build dates until mid-August and delivery by early 2019, the 4.1 per cent rise in gross domestic product in the second quarter is prompting expectant long term US economic projections.

The first seven months of this year have already yielded five of the highest 12 order months on record.

With the current supply of trucks limited, fleets are also placing larger volumes of orders to expedite future deliveries amidst robust freight growth and delays as OEMs cope with shortages from parts and component suppliers who have not been able to meet current demand.

The situation was unique according to Don Ake Freight Transport Intelligence Vice President Commercial Vehicles.

“Prices can’t rise enough to alleviate the situation. Therefore, the market is responding by placing an immense number of orders into the backlog,” he said.

“Fleets are reserving places in line, so they can get the maximum number of trucks in the future. It is a bizarre occurrence and it will not be resolved soon. Conditions may be abnormal but they are abnormally good.”

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