FTR reports preliminary North American Class 8 orders for September continued to surge, coming in at 42,300 units for the month.
The third quarter of 2018 decisively set a record with 146,800 Class 8 orders. September Class 8 order activity was the 10th best month ever, but with most of 2018 hitting all-time highs was only the fifth highest monthly volume this year. Sturdy freight growth continues to strain industry capacity and fleets are placing orders a year out to secure new truck availability throughout 2019. North American Class 8 orders for the past twelve months have now totaled 497,000 units.
“The pressure is on fleets to add capacity to keep up with a robust freight market,” said Don Ake, FTR vice president of commercial vehicles. “The economy is surging right now, putting stress on shippers to find trucks to deliver goods on time.
“Fleets don’t want to be stuck in the same situation next year, so they are placing huge orders for trucks well ahead of time.”
Final data for September will be available from FTR later in the month as part of its North American Commercial Truck & Trailer Outlook service.
“The focus now turns to the supply chain,” Ake said. “Parts and component suppliers have struggled to keep pace with the growing OEM builds this year. Demand, as indicated by the surge in orders, will be even stronger next year.
“It is uncertain if suppliers can meet this challenge, as they compete for workers and materials in a vibrant economy.”
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