ACT Research is predicting that orders for heavy-duty commercial vehicles will drop dramatically in the first quarter of 2010, largely as a result of more costly EPA2010 emission mandate engines coming online.
Net orders were up in late 2009 as companies rushed to secure pre-EPA2010 engines, but those build slots are now full, according to ACT Researchs latest North American Commercial Vehicle Outlook.
The research group is forecasting heavy-duty vehicle production will climb 22% year-over-year in the first quarter of 2010 as OEMs fulfill orders for EPA07 engines. ACT Research said medium-duty production, which is linked to the housing market, will see a steadier and gradual increase in production over the next two years.
"With the industry out of pre-mandate build slots, there is very little near-term support for domestic order activity," said Kenny Vieth, partner and senior analyst with ACT Research. "Since the price of a new Class 8 unit is set to rise sharply and the trucking industry is still dealing with excess capacity and weak used sales values, we expect OEMs will be particularly aggressive marketing product outside the U.S. and Canada."