SOUTHFIELD, Mich. — It appears that the much-discussed prospective chink in the armor of a two-year upward trend of new Class 8 truck sales is now visible.
Wards Intelligence reported Wednesday that August sales of 23,466 was a 6.7% decline from July’s sales of 25,164, but perhaps more significantly, it marked the first time in the past 25 months that sales had not exceed the figure for the comparable month in the previous year.
The streak began in July 2017 when sales were 8.7% higher than July 2016. July sales in 2019 were 21.9% higher than sales in July 2018.
Still in place is a streak of 20 consecutive months where the year-to-date sales has been higher than the same period the previous year, although that percentage has declined in each of the past three months.
Year-to-date sales of 183,462 in 2019 are up 18.7% over the same period in 2018 when sales had totaled 154,587.
Only two OEMs posted month-over-month gains in August. Volvo sales of 2,563 were 3.1% higher in August when 2,486 units were sold. Cousin Mack Trucks posted a 3% gain over July with sales of 1,773 in 2019 compared to 1,722 in July.
The largest month-over-month decline was 15.1% at Freightliner, although the Daimler Trucks North America product continues to hold the top position in market share at 35.6% with sales of 66,937. The next closest OEM is Peterbilt at 15.1%
As would be expected with year-to-date sales comparisons, all OEMs are ahead of 2018. International leads the parade at 28.9% (sales of 26,635 versus 20,663) followed by cousins Kenworth (21.2%) and Peterbilt (20.3%)