North America heavy-duty Classes 5-8 preliminary net orders for December represent an improvement from where orders were through most of 2012.

The final numbers, which will be released mid-January, will approach 14,200 units for medium-duty Classes 5-7 vehicles and trucks and 21,300 for heavy-duty Class 8. The preliminary net order numbers are typically accurate to within 5% of actual.

Kenny Vieth, president and senior analyst, ACT Research, said, We suspect the looming 'fiscal cliff was a limiting factor in what is typically a strong order month for Class 8. With the biggest piece of fiscal uncertainty now in the rearview mirror, improved forward visibility should allow for better orders in coming months.

The 21,300 Class 8 orders booked in the month were modestly ahead of Novembers order total. Like Class 8, medium-duty vehicle orders were in line with November volumes, with 14,200 net orders booked. December represented the sixth consecutive month of year-over-year order improvement.