Total deliveries from the Volvo Group’s truck operations in November amounted to 19,326 vehicles, a decrease of 21% compared with the year-earlier period. During the fourth quarter, the Group is forced to continuously take stop days and stop weeks in production to avoid inventory build-up of trucks.
Customers continue to be very cautious and are in most cases waiting with their investment decisions due to the current uncertain macro-economic environment. In Europe, the weak order intake trend from the third quarter continues. During October and November, the number of cancelled orders was bigger than the number of new orders, which resulted in a negative net order intake of 1,800 trucks in Europe. The weakening outside Europe and North America has continued and lately also accelerated, which has resulted in a substantial weakening of order intake also on these markets.
In total, the effect is that the order book continues to shrink at a rapid pace. This forces the Group to, as previously announced, make quick adaptations through big reductions of production in all factories world-wide. As in the fourth quarter 2008, it will be necessary to implement a large number of stop days in the European industrial system also during the first quarter 2009, when the production will be stopped for approximately 20-25 days. This means that there is no production, while the personnel and thereto related cost remains.
Mack deliveries in November totaled 1,275 vehicles, down 17% compared with the year-earlier period. The decline is a result of low demand in North America and other markets in which Mack operates as truck buyers remain cautious due to a worsening U.S. economy and the spread of the credit and liquidity crisis around the globe.
Renault Trucks’ deliveries continued to slow down substantially during November, to about half of the level last year in the same month. In November, 3,477 trucks were delivered in Europe, a decline by 52%. The downturn has now started to impact the demand in overseas markets. However, deliveries in Asia were still above last year’s by 24%, driven by the Middle East. Renault Trucks has already reduced production rates during the third quarter, and production rates are being reduced even further during the fourth quarter.
Volvo Trucks’ deliveries in the month of November declined with 8% compared with the year-earlier period. Due to the current uncertainty in the economy, the overall demand for new trucks in Europe continues to be weak. The European delivery rates in the month of November are down 30%. The demand for trucks in North America has not recovered. The deliveries in North America decreased in the month of November with 25%. The downturn has now started to impact the demand in South America. However, the deliveries in South America and Asia remained at a high level. In the month of November, the deliveries were up 4% in South America and 100% in Asia, whereof the Middle East increased with 156%. Volvo Trucks has during the autumn adapted the production capacity on all main production sites globally.