Truck sales strong in third quarter

Sales of commercial trucks were up sharply as dealers began the final three months of 2011, according to figures compiled by Ward's Automotive Group, a division of Penton Media Inc.

Retail sales of trucks with gross vehicle weight ratings above 10,000 pounds were running 32% ahead of last year’s pace. Through the first nine months of 2011, truck dealers sold 356,333 Class 3-8 trucks, compared with 270,665 during the same period of 2010.

Class 8 trucks posted the biggest gains. Truck dealers sold 115,975 units during the first three quarters of 2011, up 50%. Class 5 and 6 models were also selling extremely well through the first nine months of 2011, up 46% and 41%, respectively.

Class 4 trucks were the only segment down for the year. Customers bought 8,220 units through September, down 18% from a year earlier.

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