December Medium-Duty Sales Rise 9.1% Year-Over-Year

Classes 4-5 Drive December Increase; Full-Year Medium-Duty Total Up 8.4%
Kenworth medium-duty truck
A Kenworth Class 5 medium-duty truck. In the only year-on-year increase on a segment-by-segment basis, Classes 4-5 collectively saw December sales rise 37.5% to 12,141 from 8,812 units. (Kenworth Truck Co.)

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U.S. retail sales for medium-duty trucks rose 9.1% year-over-year in December while finishing 2023 some 8.4% higher than 2022’s full-year total, according to data from Wards Intelligence.

Classes 4-7 saw total retail truck sales increase to 22,857 in December from 20,945 units a year earlier. Also, the latest figures jumped 18.6% compared with the 19,277 units sold in November.

In the only year-on-year increase on a segment-by-segment basis, Classes 4-5 collectively saw December sales rise 37.5% to 12,141 from 8,812 units.

“As we go further down the path of consumers wanting goods delivered yesterday, I have to believe this is supporting sales in Classes 4 and 5,” ACT Research Vice President Steve Tam said.



Another factor coming into play is the satiation of pent-up demand now being addressed by original equipment manufacturers previously focused elsewhere following the COVID-19 pandemic, Tam said.

Class 7 saw a 7.9% decrease in sales in December to 4,396 vehicles from 4,774 units a year earlier, and Class 6 sales dropped 14.1% to 6,320 from 7,359 units.

Isuzu topped the sales table for Class 4 with 1,222 vehicles, bumping Ford down to second after losing the crown to the Dearborn, Mich.-based company in November.

Ford sold the most trucks in Class 5 in December at 4,504 vehicles.

Freightliner, a brand of Daimler Truck North America, sold the most Class 7 trucks in December at 1,667 units as well as the most in Class 6 at 1,456.

December was expected to see an increase in sales compared with November. It is sometimes called the “Miracle Happens Here” month as truck manufacturers, their employees as well as dealers, have sales targets and performance targets they are hoping to meet, and December is the last chance to do so.


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For the full-year period, medium-duty sales rose 8.4% year-over-year to 240,525 units from 221,834 in 2022.

ACT expected a full-year increase of just more than 9%, although Tam said the forecasting and research group uses slightly different sources compared to Wards.

Sales in Classes 4 and 5 in 2023 totaled 109,375, a 5.2% increase from 103,963 trucks a year earlier.

Class 6 sales totaled 77,994 units, an 8.3% rise compared with 2022’s 71,998 trucks.

Class 7 sales totaled 53,156 units, a 15.9% increase compared with 45,873 trucks.

ACT expects a 0.2% year-over-year increase in medium-duty sales in 2024.

“It doesn’t sound like medium duty is going to catch up due to a heavy-duty slowdown,” Tam said. “I really feel for medium-duty buyers because they’ve been taking a back seat to the heavy-duty market.”

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