The U.S. economy is recovering better than was expected a few months ago, and truck markets in the NAFTA region recorded double-digit growth in 2010 (+15.1%). This growth is also reflected in the results at Daimler Trucks North America (DTNA), which saw figures at DTNA improve greatly last year, to 79,382 units (2009: 63,558 units, +24.9%).
“Our sales success in 2010 outpaced the development of the market. In the U.S. and the rest of NAFTA, we are the market leader in the segment of medium and heavy-duty trucks in classes 6 to 8, with a market share in NAFTA of 31.6%. We thus increased our market share by two percentage points compared to the previous year’s figure. We also recorded a very positive development of sales in the U.S. market alone, and with a market share of 32.6% (2009: 30%) we are the most successful manufacturer in this segment. The sales figures for 2011 look very promising. The market share for our medium and heavy-duty trucks has been increased by February to 38.5% in the USA and 37.1% in the NAFTA region”, Martin Daum President and CEO of DTNA says.
DTNA has started the current fiscal year in a strong competitive position. Andreas Renschler, the Daimler Board of Management member responsible for Daimler Trucks and Daimler Buses, says, “We are expecting significant growth in the U.S. truck market this year, particularly in sales of trucks in Classes 6 to 8. As a result, we will revise our original 2011 growth forecast for the NAFTA region upward. We expect that the truck market in the NAFTA region will grow this year by 30 to 35%. Up to now the growth prognosis was 20 to 25%. This upturn is resulting in a significant increase in the demand for transport services, and thus also for commercial vehicles — because economic growth means more demand for transport.
To accommodate the rising demand for commercial vehicles in NAFTA, DTNA will expand its production schedule in 2011 and plans to fill a combined total of about 1,300 new positions at all of the truck locations in the U.S. and Mexico in the first half of the year. DTNA’s incoming orders in North America are currently exceeding expectations.
At the Mid America Trucking Show in Louisville, KY, DTNA presented two new trucks for the so-called vocational segment at a truck show. Vocational trucks are trucks that body builders provide with special superstructures for on-road use or construction site applications.
Vocational trucks are a very attractive and profitable growth segment which is affected very little by cyclical factors. “One out of every four trucks in Classes 6 to 8 sold in the U.S. is a vocational truck. And we now have the Western Star 4700 and the Freightliner SD line-up, all very competitive new products for tackling this market,” Daum adds.