â€œDespite uncertainty about the economy and Brexit, it is positive to see that light commercial vehicle registrations increased 6.4% in Februaryâ€, said Sue Robinson, Director of the National Franchised Dealers Association which represents commercial vehicle and franchised car retailers across the UK, commenting on the SMMTâ€™s light commercial vehicle registration figures.
In the first two months this year, all sectors in the van market have shown signs of growth, with the only exception being the small car-derived vans up to 2.0 tonnes. This has been an on-going trend in this sector as many of these vans are used by tradesman, with many of these smaller businesses opting for mid-size 2.0-2.5 tonne vans which can carry substantially more in volume. Year to date growth in this sector is at 8.8%.
The most significant light commercial sector is the large vans and bodied chassis in the 2.5 – 3.5 tonne range, which has registered 34,610 unitâ€™s years to date. This sector accounts for 60% of total volume sold and many of these vans are purchased by corporate fleets and used for door-to-door deliveries. However, we could expect to see this market become unsettled as there are new products in the market such as the Volkswagen Crafter and Mercedes Sprinter to be launched soon.
Robinson continues, â€œOverall, there is optimism and confidence among dealers that the light commercial market will remain buoyant throughout in 2018. With the forthcoming introduction of the new Ford Transit Custom, and the newly introduced Mercedes X-range pick-up, plus further upgrades from other manufactures, there is plenty of new product lined up that will bolster salesâ€.