Commercial Truck Sales Up but Class 8 Down as Large Fleets Cut Back

Medi¬≠um duty com¬≠mer¬≠cial trucks have seen sales gains in 2013, but heavy duty Class 8 vehi¬≠cles have been down, . Total new com¬≠mer¬≠cial vehi¬≠cle (Class 3‚Äď8) were 379,000 units through the first eight months of 2013, up 2% from 371,700 ‚Äď up in all seg¬≠ments except for Class 8, wich were down 8.5% dur¬≠ing the eight-month peri¬≠od com¬≠pared to the pre¬≠vi¬≠ous cal¬≠en¬≠dar year.

‚ÄúWhile the out¬≠look for the year start¬≠ed with a sig¬≠nif¬≠i¬≠cant amount of opti¬≠mism by most, it now appears that the 2013 cal¬≠en¬≠dar year new reg¬≠is¬≠tra¬≠tions will be only slight¬≠ly bet¬≠ter than the 2012 cal¬≠en¬≠dar year,‚ÄĚ said Gary Meteer, direc¬≠tor, after¬≠mar¬≠ket and com¬≠mer¬≠cial vehi¬≠cle solu¬≠tions at Polk.

Large fleets have been down in acqui¬≠si¬≠tions this year. Fleets oper¬≠at¬≠ing more than 500 vehi¬≠cles were down 17.8% in Class 8 pur¬≠chas¬≠es dur¬≠ing that time peri¬≠od. Small fleets ‚Äď oper¬≠at¬≠ing five or few¬≠er units ‚Äď account¬≠ed for 11.7% of new Class 8 vehi¬≠cles this year. That‚Äôs an increase by 20.5% dur¬≠ing the first eight months of 2013.

There are still quite a few old¬≠er trucks on US high¬≠ways, which has cre¬≠at¬≠ed a robust mar¬≠ket for com¬≠mer¬≠cial parts and ser¬≠vice. There are more than 11.7 mil¬≠lion Class 3‚Äď8 vehi¬≠cles oper¬≠at¬≠ing on US high¬≠ways. Near¬≠ly 38% of them were built pri¬≠or to the 2000 mod¬≠el year. The trucks range in num¬≠bers from a high of 46.6% in Class 6 to a low of 30.8% of the old¬≠er mod¬≠els in Class 5.

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