FTR Reports North American Class 8 Orders Plunge to the Lowest Level in Modern Era at 4,000 Units

05.04.20 | FTR

FTR reports preliminary North American Class 8 orders plunged for the second month in a row to an unprecedented level of 4,000 units. April order activity was the lowest in the modern era (1996), 44% below March, and 73% less than a year ago. Class 8 orders for the last twelve months now total just 160,000 units.
Fleets are delaying ordering trucks until the economic uncertainty over the COVID-19 crisis abates. Fleets also canceled a significant number of orders which were scheduled for near-term deliveries. Orders are expected to rise in May to around 10,000 units. Class 8 order activity after that is highly dependent on the speed and strength of the economic recovery.

Click here to view the latest release and an interactive graph of the Class 8 Orders >

Don Ake, vice president commercial vehicles, commented, “Despite all the economic calamity and a significant number of cancellations, Class 8 orders managed to generate a gain in April. OEM production was shut down for most of April, yet order activity endured. There still are a few fleets that need new trucks. We expect retail sales to be somewhat higher than expected in April.”
“The industry received a shock right along with the economy due to the virus response. Fleets will remain extremely cautious going forward, but we expect orders to modestly increase as the freight markets recover. We have already seen some signs of life in refrigerated freight and expect improvement in dry van freight soon. The industry recovery will begin in May, but it will be gradual, just like the overall economy. “
Final data for April will be available from FTR later in the month as part of its North American Commercial Truck & Trailer Outlook service. To contact FTR, email [email protected] or call (888) 988-1699 ext. 1.

The full trailer data is available as part of FTR's North American Truck & Trailer Outlook service.

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About FTR
For more than 30 years, FTR has served as the industry leader in freight transportation forecasting for the shipping, trucking, rail, intermodal, equipment, and financial communities in North America. FTR’s experts, with over 250 years of combined experience in the transportation industry, provide quantitative analysis with historical and modal-specific insights. FTR’s reports, data, commentary, and insights help clients evaluate market risks, identify new opportunities, and make informed decisions.

FTR is the only company with a complete set of freight data for all modes of transportation with detail at the 3 Digit STCC commodity level. FTR tracks and forecasts 200+ unique commodity groups both quarterly and annually using their proprietary Freight•cast U.S. freight transportation model. FTR’s Transportation Conference held annually in September in Indianapolis is a unique event bringing together every aspect of the freight transportation world into one place. For more information 

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