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Trucks Get Big Q3 Output Boost

Trucks Get Big Q3 Output Boost

Truck production accelerates in the latest Q3 production-schedule revisions, but car output is throttled.

The North American auto industry’s already rapid third-quarter output pace got a bit more frenetic with the addition of 32,100 vehicles in the latest round of production-schedule updates.

The revised slate calls for the assembly of 4,244,500 vehicles in July-September, a 7.3% increase from year-ago’s 3,956,800 completions.

With light-truck sales soaring, it came as no surprise that planned truck output increased, while car production was trimmed.

Scheduled truck output climbed by 50,400 units in the revised roster, 85% of which was in the light-duty segment.

However, much of that increase already has taken place with an estimated July overbuild of 31,000 units, followed by planned increases of 8,400 in August and 11,000 in September.

Ford accounted for the largest share of the Q3 truck output gain, having built 26,600 units above plan in July with an additional 2,400 assemblies set for August and 11,300 more pegged for September.

Overall, third-quarter truck output is scheduled to reach 2,490,400 units, 8.7% ahead of prior-year’s 2,290,500 completions.

On the other hand, car production has been trimmed by 18,300 units, even after accounting for the addition of 11,600 units at Mercedes’ Alabama complex that were not included in the previous tally.

Some 22,900 fewer car assemblies now are planned at Ford in the third quarter, along with cuts of 11,500 at General Motors, 5,300 at Nissan and 4,300 at Honda.

An order influx has led the dedicated medium- and heavy-duty truck makers to boost third-quarter production by 6,400 units, spread nearly evenly across the 3-month period. A total of 92,100 units are slated for assembly, a 6.5% gain on prior-year’s 86,500 units.

Industry car and truck output in the first nine months of the year now is set to reach 13,047,600 units, 5.3% ahead of the 12,391,500 vehicles rolled out a year earlier.

Output for the Detroit Three totals 6,940,800 units, up 4.9% on like-2013’s 6,619,200 completions, giving them a 53.2% output share against 53.4% last year.

Transplant production is up 5.5% to 5,826,100 units from 5,522,400 year ago. Their output share is up slightly to 44.7% from 44.6%.

Output by the dedicated medium- and heavy-duty truck makers totals 280,700 in January-September, up 12.3% from 249,900 in like-2013, netting a 2.2% share this year vs. 2.0% year-ago.

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