This was the third highest May on record, FTR said on Tuesday. Orders have averaged over 40,000 units for the past six months; an unprecedented volume in the industry. Class 8 orders exceeded expectations again as fleets order in huge numbers in an attempt to keep up with the rapidly growing freight demand. North American Class 8 orders for the past 12 months now total 386,000 units.
“This is the tightest capacity crunch ever," said Don Ake, the FTR vice president of commercial vehicles. "Long-time veterans in this industry are saying this is the best freight market they have ever seen. Fleets cannot add capacity fast enough and as long as the economy and manufacturing are going great, this capacity crisis will continue.”
“There is a shortage of truck parts and components, so OEMs have been slow to deliver," Ake added. "This just exacerbates an already bad situation. Fleets are now grabbing every available build slot, hoping to get some more trucks by the end of the year. Some orders now are even spilling into the first quarter of next year. It is a red-hot market.”
Final data for May will be available from FTR later in the month as part of its North American Commercial Truck & Trailer Outlook service.