As the economy booms in America, trucking companies just can’t get their hands on enough trucks. Big rig manufacturers are filling orders as fast as they can, but they can’t keep up. Erica E. Phillips writes:
Anyone ordering a new heavy-duty truck this summer will have wait until sometime next year to get it, assuming strained manufacturing supply chains hold together.
An unprecedented run of orders for big rigs has pushed the backlog at truck factories to nine months, according to industry analysts, the largest since early 2006, when truckers stocked up to get vehicles in place before tougher environmental restrictions would take effect. Typically the backlog is about five months for the truck industry’s manufacturers, analysts said.
“It is longer than it should be,” said Magnus Koeck, vice president of marketing for Volvo AB’s North America operation, where Class 8 truck orders this year soared to 25,000 from 11,000 during the first six months of 2017. “Of course we are not alone in this situation,” he said. “Everyone is in the same boat.”
North American freight-haulers ordered more than 300,000 Class 8 trucks in the first seven months of this year and are on track to order a record 450,000 of the heavy-duty vehicles for the full year, according to ACT Research. That would be the largest book since 2004, when orders reached 390,000, according to analysts.
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