BLOOMINGTON, Ind. – Preliminary Class 8 truck orders totaled 16,700 units in February, marking the second consecutive month of subdued orders.
Orders were up 5% compared to January but down 58% year-over-year, FTR reported. January and February were the lowest two-month period since fall of 2016.
However, several OEMs are sold out for 2019, which could be a reason orders have slowed. Backlogs should tumble for the second straight months. Class 8 orders have still totaled 429,000 units over the past 12 months.
“Fleets that need to order trucks are looking for any available open build slot, regardless of brand. Specifying is also more difficult as the supply chain for parts and components stays tight. Production continues at high rates, as OEMs build those record orders that were placed in 2018,” said Don Ake, vice-president of commercial vehicles with FTR.
“The freight market started off the year strong and carriers have still been able to hire enough drivers to expand their fleets. Trucking capacity is not in the chaotic state it was in 2018, but business remains vibrant. Some moderation in freight growth is expected in the second half of the year and this should loosen things up a bit.”