Photo: Jim Park

Photo: Jim Park

Class 8 truck orders in 2014 were up 42% over 2013, with 380,200 net orders being placed last year, according to data from ACT Research. Class 5-7 truck orders also performed well, selling 223,250 units, the best number since 2006.

In December, Class 8 orders came in at 44,060 trucks, topping the 40,000-unit mark for the third consecutive month. In the fourth quarter of 2014, there was an order volume of 130,900 trucks, the strongest three-month stretch since the first quarter of 2006. In general, orders of Class 8 trucks consistently outperformed expectations.

“For the year, 380,200 net orders were placed, up 42% from 2013, as Class 8 orders have topped expectations for eight consecutive months,” said Kenny Vieth, president and senior analyst of ACT.

Medium-duty trucks orders reached the highest monthly volume since 2008 in December with 22,954 units. Buses saw the largest gain in the medium-duty segment, up 23% over 2013.

“The order improvement was broad-based, with trucks up 15%, buses up 23% and RVs up 17%,” said Vieth. “The only negative was step vans, which saw orders decline 12%.”