Brakes go on in U.S. truck sales race

November sales show buoyant market slowing down?

class 8 truck sales

It’s been a crazy past 18 months or so, now though it appears sanity is returning to the truck sales race.

There was growth in heavy commercial sales in Australia in November, just 2.7% and while that is compared to a big November in 2017, it’s down on the better than 13% growth the industry has experienced locally this year.

In the U.S. the brakes appear to be on a little heavier in the truck sales race.

Orders for heavy-duty trucks declined in November for the first time this year, falling to the lowest level in 14 months.

27,900 new Class 8 (heavy-duty) trucks were ordered last month, a number 15% lower than November 2017.

The data comes from analysts, ACT Research.

“Truck demand has peaked and will start to wane,” – Steve Tam, vice president for ACT.

The November decline follows a buying spree that produced 468,600 new truck orders in the first 11 months of 2018.

And while the November result would have been noticed by the U.S. truck manufacturers, the order books are so full from the surge that many will be at full capacity until at least late next year trying to catch up.

Mr Tam telling the Wall Street Journal that the slowdown was inevitable.

“The number of trucks out there in the fleet will start to normalize and return to a balanced state, which is really where things run well.”

Despite the Australian truck sales market appearing to be cooling a little, 2018 will still go down as a record year for the industry, and the first calendar year that sees more than 40,000 sales in a year.

In fact, the Truck Industry Council (TIC) says we should see more than 41,000 sales if the December result is consistent with recent numbers recorded in the last month of the year.

Which brands have fared best in the local truck sales boom?

So far this year it has been the light and medium-duty focused Japanese manufacturers that have enjoyed the biggest volume gains.

Until the end of August, Isuzu has delivered an additional 929 trucks, Hino 803 and Fuso 353.

While of the heavy-duty focused brands the best performing include Kenworth (+618), Volvo (+359), Iveco (+377), MAN (+275) and Mercedes-Benz (+296).

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About Joel Helmes 1676 Articles
Joel is the founder and CEO of Heavy Vehicles. With more than 20 years experience in the media, including more than 10 years heading up the car publication - Behind the Wheel, Joel is passionate about bringing a fresh perspective to the Australian road transport industry. Prior to his media career Joel worked for a number of years as a bus, truck and delivery driver.

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