“September’s decrease of -4.2% in registrations of light commercial vehicles reflects the uncertainty which has been affecting businesses and private buyers over the past months”, said Sue Robinson, Director of the National Franchised Dealers Association (NFDA), which represents franchised car and commercial vehicle retailers in the UK, commenting on the latest SMMT’s light commercial vehicle registration figures.
Light commercial vehicles up to 3.5 tonnes declined by -4.2% in September to 57,368 units. Year-to-date, the market is -3.1% down on last year to 282,679.
Small and medium vans up to 2 tonnes and between 2 - 2.5 tonnes both saw substantial declines compared with the same time last year of, respectively, -25.5% and -10.7%. This result shows that tradesmen, service engineers and self-employed people, who tend to use this type of vans, might be delaying the purchase of new vehicles.
Registrations of ‘pickups’ remained stable (+0.4%) and, more importantly, heavy light commercials between 2.5 tonnes – 3.5 tonnes showed a marginal improvement of +0.1%, meaning that only 35 more vans than this time last year were put on the road.
These vans are usually purchased by fleets and corporate buyers and the segment is a barometer of the economy as it represents 62% of all light commercial registrations. Year-to-date sales of heavy light commercials remain lower than last year by -3.2%.
Robinson continued, “Recent feedback from dealers suggests that the weaker sterling is starting to force manufacturers to increase the retail prices of some of the items coming from the EU, particularly, those from Germany.”
“Generally, it is believed that the market will continue to perform at these levels in the last quarter of the year.”
NOTES TO EDITORS:
Gabriele Severini, NFDA Communications Officer
Tel: 020 7307 3423
Mob: 07880 039897
Press Office direct line: 020 7307 3422
Press Office fax: 020 7307 3406
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The Retail Motor Industry represents the interests of operators in England, Wales, Northern Ireland and the Isle of Man providing sales and services to motorists and businesses. The RMI has a formal association with the independent Scottish Motor Trade Association which represents the retail motor industry in Scotland.