FTR Research reports more than 20,000 net trailer orders for April 2017, a 26 percent increase over April of last year. Net trailer orders declined a modest four percent compared to the previous month, consistent with common seasonal fluctuations.
The research firm reports that total orders over the most recent 12-month period exceed 250,000 units. Also, production backlogs have eased significantly over the past year. In fact, they are 16 percent lower than last year at this time.
The Commercial Carrier Journal (CCJ) quotes Don Ake, FTR’s VP of Commercial Vehicles, “The trailer market held on to the strong production gains of March, which is a great sign for future sales.” Ake also says trailer production exceeded orders in both March and April, and that this further eased backlogs.
He also noted that fleets continue to place trailer orders now in anticipation of delivery in the latter half of 2017. Optimism over increased freight demand is driving some of these buying decisions. Fleets are replacing older units in response to a more positive outlook for the industry. Dealer orders were also strong in April.
Although Ake expects order levels to reflect the seasonal summer slowdown, he believes that 2017 will be a better year for trailer orders than was expected earlier in the year.
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