U.S. sales of medium- and heavy-duty trucks fell 31.3 percent to 19,771 units in March from a year earlier, continuing a slide that began in February 2007.
The latest decline left large-truck sales in the first quarter down 34.0 percent from the year-earlier period, to 53,023. In the first quarter of 2006, before the numbers began to plummet, truck sales totaled 137,487.
In March, sales dropped between 20 and 60 percent for every size class.
Sales of Class 8 trucks, the largest size, fell by the smallest percentage, dropping 21.1 percent to 8,222.
On the other hand, sales of Class 6 trucks collapsed 56.7 percent to 2,059. Class 4 sales declined 28.0 percent to 3,933. Class 5 sales tumbled 43.0 percent to 2,063. Class 7 sales fell 22.8 percent to 3,494.
International's sales topped other makers at 4,719 in March, down 22.4 percent. That was a smaller decline than those of its top rivals. Sales for No. 2 Ford Motor Co. slid 35.4 percent to 4,285. No. 3 Freightliner's sales declined 22.6 percent to 4,070. No other brand sold more than 1,200 trucks.
Each of the following manufacturers' truck sales tumbled by at least 50 percent: Chevrolet, Hino, Mack, Mitsubishi Fuso and Nissan Diesel.