Forklift sales were strong in 2020, but down

Industrial Truck Association says industry performed well during pandemic.

In the North America market, 2020 forklift truck sales were reported down compared to 2019. The market decline can be partially attributed to the impact of COVID-19, with truck sales decreasing overall by 5.1% from the previous year.

"The industrial truck industry had its third best year on record in 2019, and the sales decrease in 2020 with COVID-19 was not unexpected," said Jay Gusler, chairman of the board of directors for the Industrial Truck Association and executive vice president operations for Mitsubishi Logisnext Americas Group. "Our industry performed well throughout the pandemic thanks to the essential nature of our products and the dedicated associates in our industry."

Year-end forklift truck sales of 230,134 included electric rider trucks (Class 1 and Class 2 combined), motorized hand trucks (Class 3) and internal combustion powered trucks (Class 4 and Class 5 combined). Class 2 and Class 3 trucks saw a small increase from 2019 at 2.0% and 1.1% respectively. The remaining classes witnessed declines, with Class 5 seeing the largest decrease at 19.7%.

Looking forward to 2021, the industry's first quarter results are healthy. 2021 also marks the 70th anniversary of ITA. Throughout the year, ITA will be posting facts and history from both the association and the forklift industry on social media. Follow ITA on both Facebook and Twitter.

"ITA members have been instrumental in leading the way with enhanced safety, engineering practices and market intelligence that has guided the industry well over the past seven decades and will continue that leadership role into the future," said Brian Feehan, president of ITA.