Classes 5-8 vehicle orders were booked. Class 8 garnered 14,300 orders, and for Classes 5-7, 17,100 orders were placed, according to ACT Research. Note that these numbers are preliminary. Final May numbers will be published in mid-June.
“Three consecutive months of decidedly lower net orders for heavy duty commercial vehicles appear more closely aligned with current activity in the manufacturing and energy sectors of the broader economy,” said Steve Tam, ACT’s commercial vehicle sector vice president. “While metrics in these segments are improving, they can best be described as not being as bad as they were previously.
“Framed by the ongoing overcapacity narrative (too many trucks chasing too little freight) and resultant weak freight rate environment, along with continued softness in late-model used tractor values, May’s Class 8 net orders fell 31 percent against a moderately tough May 2015 comparison to 14,300 units. Positively, May’s orders, true to season expectations, bested April, coming in 4 percent higher.”
Orders for medium-duty vehicles slowed to their lowest level since July 2014. Despite the decline, (-14 percent month over month and -18 percent year over year), intake remained 4 percent higher on a year-to-date basis at 17,100 units. May’s lower intake was anticipated and portends an expected lower absolute level of activity in the near term.