October exceeded order trends of the past few months, with Class 5-7 orders expected at 18,600 units (±5%) and Class 8 orders at 26,300 units (±5%), according ACT Research.

“The fourth quarter is historically the start of the order season for Class 8 vehicles for the new year,” said Ken W. Vieth, ACT’s Sr. Partner and General Manager. “The order volume exceeded the OEM build plans for October, so if build occurred as planned, Class 8 backlog will grow by about 2,000 units (not SA). These orders will help fill open build slots remaining in 2013 while providing a better planning base to start 2014 production.

“Seasonally the Class 8 order volume translates into about 25,000 units. Assuming October is not a one-month shot of adrenalin and recognizing that orders have gradually edged higher quarter by quarter in 2013, our expectations are for further strength in the fourth quarter.

“The Classes 5-7 OEM build plan for October 2013 shows a volume almost identical to the new preliminary net orders received: This suggests Class 5-7 backlog will remain flat heading into end of year production planning. The strength of the net orders was broad based amongst the Class 5-8 vehicle manufacturers suggesting some geographic and application balance as well.”