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Class 8 Net Orders Up 91% in April

Net orders for heavy-duty Class 8 commercial vehicles increased 91 percent in April compared to the same month last year, according to ACT Research Co. (ACT).

In the latest release of the State of the Industry: Classes 5-8 Vehicles, ACT indicated that net orders for heavy-duty vehicles continued to strengthen month-to-month. New orders were spread over the next three quarters, suggesting that companies are beginning to place orders for new EPA2010 emissions compliant equipment.

April net orders of medium-duty Classes 5-7 equipment grew by 39 percent from April 2009. However, with continued weakness in the residential housing market and tightening state budgets, the medium-duty sector has not shown the same level of rebound as the heavy-duty sector.

“From top to bottom, April was a healthy month for the Class 8 segment, at least in relative terms,” said Kenny Vieth, partner and senior analyst with ACT. “Orders were above expectations, backlogs rose and retail sales remained elevated. If orders surprise on the high side again in May, it could have upside implications for our forecasts for the remainder of 2010 and 2011.”

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