FedEx trucks are facing a national shortage due to manufacturers being shut down, and their production delayed due to social distancing and COVID-19 testing requirements. As the country reopens slowly, you might have questions on what is happening within our industry, and you can trust Work Truck Direct to give you the most up-to-date answers.
What is happening at the manufacturer level?
Manufacturers are being hit differently, but ultimately, production has slowed due to COVID-19 and the spring lock-downs. For example, at Ford, production will pause when an employee gets COVID-19, and after thorough investigation and testing of all employees, they will reopen, until the next case hits. This lapse of production causes delays that we will feel the impact from now, and in the months to come. “Overall Ford is operating at about 30% production. There was effectively no production at all in March, April, and most of May.” Says Ryan Makris, President of Work Truck Direct. “That means that chassis that were supposed to deliver to body companies in April, May, and June have been delayed by 3 months or more.”
On the flip-side, manufacturers such as FCCC (Freightliner Custom Chassis Corporation) are operating much more steadily than Ford, which will result in us seeing more Freightliner chassis come in stock earlier than Ford.
Will there be a shortage of trucks?
There already is a shortage. Phones are ringing at AP Equipment Financing (our distributor for FedEx trucks); customers want to buy and there just isn’t much out there.
Three major factors are contributing to this national truck shortage, which include:
- Chassis production delays caused by COVID-19 and the stop-and-go production at manufacturing plants
- Since everyone is now working at home and not shopping in person, home delivery is now operating at peak season levels. There’s an exponential demand for home deliveries and supply is struggling to catch up.
- The lock-downs across the nation that started in early March caused plant closures, production backlogs, and supply chain issues, which foreshadowed one thing: a massive shortage of trucks in 2020.
In early April, Ryan Makris stated that even if manufacturers are open, “chances are pretty good there’s going to be one company out of the thousands that they buy parts from, that will not be open or will not be operational.” This means that even if the chassis are ready, the truck can’t be shipped to you unless it’s 100% operational with all the parts intact. Find out more information in this video as Ryan discusses what’s going on in the truck world.
Where are these updates coming from?
Work Truck Direct and their partners at AP Equipment Financing have a pulse on current manufacturer and industry news, with connections to manufacturers such as Utilimaster, Morgan Olson, Ford, Chevy, and Freightliner.
Can I order a truck if one isn’t stocked due to the virus?
You can order trucks but with production delays, you might not see that truck in stock until early 2021. Instead, we suggest that you find a truck that will be built this year. If you have further questions or want to keep in touch when Fedex inventory does become available, get in contact with AP Financing today.