Continuing to exhibit strength above normal trends, North American Class 8 net orders for April were between 33,500 to 34,600 units, ACT Research and FTR reported, respectively.
The order activity was the best in the month since 2018, FTR officials said in a press release. While orders were down between 15% and 16% from March, the activity came in 689% higher (about 30,500) than April 2020, ACT and FTR officials reported.
Class 8 orders now total 403,000 units for the previous 12 months.
Freight growth remains sturdy, and fleets anticipate needing additional trucks to expand capacity throughout 2021, FTR officials said. The supply of new trucks remains restrained due to supply chain delays, therefore carriers continue to order at healthy rates to secure new equipment by year’s end.
“Fleets see the need for more trucks extending out the entire year. Orders remain elevated, as carriers evaluate their needs in Q4. This indicates they expect freight conditions to continue along at healthy levels right into 2022,” said Don Ake, vice president of commercial vehicles for FTR.
Ake said: “The supply chain is stressed right now, limiting the number of new trucks that can be produced. With orders continuing at this pace, it is possible that the supply chain will not be able to catch up with the fantastic truck demand for months.”
“It’s almost as if conditions are too good,” Ake added.