The current business environment for heavy-duty trucks doesn’t get much better, according to ACT Research’s recently released Transportation Digest.
“Demand for commercial vehicles in North America is about as good as we’ve seen in 35 years of monitoring heavy-duty market conditions,” says ACT President and Senior Analyst Kenny Vieth.
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“Times are so good that demand is far outrunning the industry’s ability to supply right now, and that will likely remain the case into the autumn and perhaps even through the winter,” Vieth says. “This would mark an unusual extension of peak demand for a period not impacted by an emissions-related prebuy.”
Regarding the COVD impact on the trucking industry, Vieth says the rollercoaster ride of the COVID cycle was about the same as in the Great Recession, but the duration of the ride is happening in only 25 percent of the elapsed time, ACT reports.
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“COVID triggered a super-compressed cycle, resulting in incredible pressure on supply chains to respond — and on a synchronized global level,” he says. “When you add in considerations unique to the COVID period, like workplace safety measures, wearing PPE, worker absenteeism and government and employer activity restrictions, it’s amazing that the bullwhip effect hasn’t been even tougher.”
The Transportation Digest report, which combines proprietary ACT data and analysis from a wide variety of sources, paints a picture of trends impacting transportation and commercial vehicle markets.