Paccar has reported reported record revenues and net income for the first quarter of 2006. First quarter net sales and financial services revenues were US$3.85bn compared to $3.33bn for the first quarter of 2005.

Paccar attributed the growth to strong demand.

Senior vice president Jim Cardillo said: "Freight activity is robust and trucking company profits are at record levels. US and Canadian Class 8 industry truck retail sales are projected to be 290,000-310,000 units during 2006, an increase of approximately 5% over 2005 levels. The Class 6-7 industry truck market in the US and Canada for 2006 is expected to increase slightly to 100,000-110,000 units."

"Over the last several years, the western European truck market has increased faster than Euro-zone GDP due to a growing transport sector and an expanding European economic trading block," said DAF Trucks president Aad Goudriaan.

"For 2006, western European industry truck deliveries above 15 tonnes are forecast to be 245,000-265,000 vehicles, approximately equal to last year. DAF Trucks has increased its market share in each of the past six years, with an above 15 tonne market share at a record 13.7% in 2005. The industry 6-15 tonne truck market in 2006 should be approximately 75,000-80,000 units."

Revenues from outside the US accounted for 49% of the total.

Revenues at PACCAR Parts, the company's aftermarket parts division, continued to increase in the first quarter as more dealers and customers used the company's proprietary inventory management software systems. PACCAR's aftermarket parts revenues were $1.7bn in 2005.

Paccar is also benefiting from growth in its financial services division. Its financial services segment has a portfolio of over 145,000 trucks and trailers, with total assets in excess of $8.6bn.

Included in this segment is PACCAR Leasing, a major full-service truck leasing company in North America, with more than 23,000 vehicles.

The company said in a statement that its after-tax return on consolidated revenues (ROR) was a record 8.9% in the first quarter of 2006 compared to 8.2% in the first quarter of 2005.

The board of directors approved an increase to the regular quarterly dividend from $0.25 per share to $0.30 per share. Paccar said it has raised its regular quarterly dividend nine times in the last 10 years, an increase of 435% over the decade.