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INTERNATIONAL NEWS

Commercial vehicle registrations

Jun 24, 2013
Commercial vehicle (CV) registration figures for January have increased by 5.6% year-on-year according to figures released by the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT).

The total number of light commercial vehicles registered in 2013 so far stands at 16,049 – an 11.9% increase over figures from January 2012. Pick-up trucks boast a 34.5% increase in registrations for this year, while 2.5 tonnes to 3.5 tonnes van registrations are up 3.7%.

Larger vehicles have fared less well as a whole, with registrations of vehicles of more than 3.5 tonnes falling by 19.6% with 2,882 registered so far. Of these, 1,043 are articulated vehicles, a 21.3% drop compared with January 2012. The figures for rigid body vehicles up to 6.0 tonnes increased in January 2013, however, which saw a rise of 22.8% over the same period last year.

Volkswagen is dominating the light sector with a 46.2% increase in LCV registrations for 2013, rising from 1,632 units to 2,386. Mercedes registered 420 fewer LCVs in January this year – a reduction of 39.3% – but is sure to see increases in sales with its new Citan.

MAN has seen the best performance from the heavy CV sector, with a rise of 16.2%. This is in contrast to the majority of other heavy CV manufacturers, which largely reported a decline of new vehicle registrations. Renault Trucks suffered the hardest drop, with a 58.1% cut in registrations, but is embarking on a regeneration of its range which should also boost its sales.

According to figures from the European Automobile Manufacturers' Association (ACEA), the UK was the only EU market to show a growth in CV registrations in February.

The ACEA data show that the UK posted an increase of 4.2% while other EU markets were down for the 14th consecutive month. Demand in Italy was down 31.3%, Spain by 19.5%, Germany by 14.4% and France by 12.3%. In all, 109,331 new CVs were registered in February across all markets and sectors.

While the van segment up to 3.5t decreased by 13.3% across the EU as a whole, a 11.8% rise in their registrations in the UK forms the backbone of the positive CV performance.

It helped to offset an 11% drop in registrations of trucks over 16t in the UK which, although better than France, Italy and Spain, is slightly outdone by Germany where demand fell by just 8.9%.

Germany also did slightly better with vehicles between 3.5t and 16t with February registrations down by 15.6% compared with 17.7% in the UK, 26.1% in Italy and 27.0% in Spain.

Although the UK remains the largest market for bus and coach registrations in the EU, it also shows the biggest fall in numbers over the first two months of the year with a drop of 13.5% contrasting with an overall increase of 0.5% for all markets combined.

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