Growth in truck registrations likely as normality returns

George Barrow
August 31, 2016

Fleet renewal patterns have returned to normal following the distortions caused by Euro-6 and Whole Vehicle Type Approval, and the industry should expect a steadier rate of further growth, according to the SMMT’s latest quarterly figures.

New truck registrations (of vehicles above 6-tonne GVW) in the second quarter of the year stood at 11,071, up 12.9% on the same quarter in 2015.

However, as the SMMT’s new quarterly reporting regime for new truck registrations does not break down every month, it did not show any evidence of an effect on confidence or buying patterns among new truck buyers in the lead-up to the EU referendum.

The number of 3-axle artics registered in the period fell 11.4% year-on-year to 3,842 (compared with 4,337 in Q2 2015). And while 2-axle artics rose 11.2% quarter-on-quarter (from 427 to 475), it was not enough to offset the overall year-on-year decline in the artic market in April, May and June from 4,764 units to 4,317.

Rigids remained strong, up 22.3% year-on-year at 6,754 units compared with 5,523 units
in Q2 2015. The market between 6-tonne and 16-tonne GVW was up 25.5% year-on-year to 2,449 units (Q2 2015: 1,951), while rigids above 16-tonne GVW were up 20.5% to 4,305, from 3,572.

SMMT chief executive Mike Hawes said: “It’s encouraging to see HGV operators continuing to invest following the growth seen last year – the result of pent-up demand created by regulatory upheaval in 2014.

"We’re seeing fleet renewal patterns return to normal and the signs point towards further growth, albeit at a steadier rate. Maintaining business confidence must be a priority to ensure this crucial sector’s success.”

Daf led the market again in Q2 with a 31.3% share equating to 3,470 units registered. Scania remained second with a 16.2% share (1,788 units) and Volvo maintained its third place by just 0.1% above Mercedes-Benz (12.6% and 1,400 units compared with 12.5% and 1,389 units respectively).

MAN remained fifth (9.4%, 1,042 units) with Iveco sixth (7.7%, 847 units) and Renault seventh (5.1%, 568 units).

About the Author


George Barrow

George Barrow has been writing about nearly anything with wheels for the past 15 years, starting off his career in the car industry and ending up in commercial vehicles via a brief detour to cover technology, science and start-ups. Often found behind the wheel of a new product, his real interest lies in the business side of the automotive industry. George is the UK jury member of the International Van of the Year and International Pick-Up Award.

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