Preliminary orders for Class 8 vehicles in North America in February fell 43% from the same month a year ago, according to information from ACT Research, the Indiana-based analyst of the North American and Chinese commercial vehicle markets.
For the month, 39,500 Class 5 through Class 8 vehicle orders were booked. Class 8, garnered 17,900 orders and for Classes 5 through 7 there were 21,600 orders booked. Final numbers will be available in March, ACT said.
“Orders for commercial vehicles in February largely mirrored the ongoing U.S. economic narrative,” said Kenny Vieth, ACT’s president and senior analyst. “Healthy consumer-related indicators, such as disposable income, autos and houses, continue to support positive medium-duty demand. At the same time, ongoing weakness in the freight-rich manufacturing sector continues to weigh on heavy-duty demand.
“February’s Class 8 orders fell 43% year-over-year against a tough February 2015 comparison. Class 8 orders were in line with January, however, down just 2% in a shorter and seasonally weaker order month.
“For medium-duty vehicles, the slow but steady rise in the order trend remained evident in February, with orders rising 9% compared to a year ago and 24% from January’s tepid intake.”