Van market declined in October

The fact that the light commercial vehicle (LCV) market declined marginally by -4.6%, in October, is in many ways an indication of what’s happening in the whole of the automotive sector currently as the continued lack of supply of new vans starts to take control.

There were 27,420 vans registered according to the latest figures released today by the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) and although this represented the second consecutive month of decline the sector remains 2.3% up on the five-year pre-pandemic average for the month of October, with 2021.

October Registrations

As can be seen from the chart above, it was not all doom and gloom with 4×4 commercials and vans under 2 tonne GVW decidedly up 115% and 1101% respectively. The large van sector which is also the volume market in the UK was down 9% compared to the market average at 5%.

Year To Date Registrations

Looking at the year to date figures, the good news remains that overall the market is up by 24.4% compared to last year with almost 300,000 units registered to date. The big winners so far remain the large van sector which is up by 33% and the pickup sector which is up 16%. The 4×4 sector is also a big winner up 203% but the volumes are small in comparison to the other markets.

Winners and Losers

Interestingly the top three best selling vans for October are exactly the same for the Year To Date with the Ford Transit Custom taking top slot with the Ford Transit following up behind. Third is the Mercedes-Benz Sprinter and the one vehicle missing in the top ten for the month which is also in the top ten of the year to date is the Ford Ranger.

Mike Hawes, SMMT Chief Executive, said, “While it’s disappointing to see the number of new vans registered during October decline, demand has remained strong over the course of the year. The commercial vehicle sector, however, is not immune to the challenges faced by the industry as a whole, most notably the semiconductor shortage. Manufacturers are working hard to fulfil orders to ensure fleets can continue to be renewed and the latest models, including zero emission products, hit UK roads.”

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