Heavy truck demand for 2010 is likely to slow after EPA 2007 engine inventory is exhausted, reports FTR Associates. FTR recently increased its 2009 Class 8 forecast due to a surge in orders in October. However, those orders are likely to reduce early 2010 freight-induced demand, as the order activity in October was driven by truck operators lining up for the last of pre-2010 emissions engines.
“2009 will end with modest freight growth, and we expect 2010 growth to be in the 2.8% range,” predicts Eric Starks, president of FTR. “However, given the huge decline in freight over the last few years, the increase in freight in 2010 will not be enough to entice fleets in large numbers to buy new, more expensive technology when such equipment is first made available. Many have usable miles on older equipment to get them through the initial up-tick in freight demand without taking the risk of adding unfamiliar engine technology to their fleet.”