Brussels, 27/03/2008 - Following a modest rise in January, demand for new commercial vehicles in Europe (EU27) continued to increase in February.
Overall, registrations were 9.8% higher than in the same month last year. The truck market recorded a double digit growth (+20.7%) and van registrations rose by 7.6%. With only Bulgaria benefiting from one more working day, no calendar effect occurred.
New Light Commercial Vehicles up to 3.5t - “vans”
After a slight decrease in January, van registrations rose again in February 2008. The 5.2% increase in Western Europe (EU15 + EFTA) and the 32.2% upturn in the new Member States resulted in a 7.5% rise overall. Cumulative figures for January and February 2008 show that registrations in Western Europe were stable compared to the first two months of 2007. Two months into the year, markets in the new EU Member States have developed at a solid pace (+29.2%). Of the main markets, only Spain recorded fewer registrations than last year (-8.3%). The four others all posted growth, from 4.1% in the UK and 4.3% in France to 14.1% in Italy and a plus of 28.7% in Germany. In absolute figures, France continued to register the most vans (39,947), followed by Italy (21,364) and Spain (19,119). In the new Member States, the Czech Republic and Poland, with over 4,500 vans each, accounted for more than half of the registrations in the region (17,822). They are followed by Romania, which recorded 2,756 registrations, Slovakia (2,062) and Hungary (1,638).
New Heavy Commercial Vehicles over 16t (excluding Buses & Coaches) – “heavy trucks”
In the heavy trucks category, demand in Western Europe grew by a sound 21.3%, whereas registrations in the new Member States posted a comparatively small growth of 6%. Cumulative first two month figures mirrored the trend in February with a plus of 23.1% in Western Europe and +9.7% in the new Member States. In February, five major markets in Western Europe registered more heavy trucks than in the same month last year: +50.1% in the UK, +35.6% in France, +28.3% in Italy. In absolute figures, Germany registered 5,563 units and France 4,074. In the new Member States, Poland represents the biggest market with 1,929 new heavy trucks registered or a 12.8% growth. The Czech Republic registered half as many, representing however a notable 37.3% increase compared to the same month last year. All markets contributed to the overall upturn, except Romania (-98.5%), Estonia (-12.6%) and Slovenia (-0.6%).
New Commercial Vehicles over 3.5t (excluding Buses & Coaches) – “trucks”
Western Europe and the new EU Member States performed equally well in the segment of commercial vehicles over 3.5t, with registrations rising by 19.8% and 20.5% respectively. The first two months of 2008 recorded a similar trend (+20.2% and +26.1%). In February, Germany represented the largest market, registering 8,126 new trucks, or 14.6% more than last year. The UK posted the strongest growth with a 58.2% increase. Poland remained the biggest market for trucks in the new Members States, recording 2,527 new vehicles in February, 21.4% more than in the same month in 2007.
New Buses & Coaches over 3.5t
In Western Europe, registrations of new buses and coaches were 21.4% higher than in February 2007. Of the five main markets, only Spain reported fewer registrations than last year (-8%). The UK represented the biggest market with 625 vehicles registered and a 61.9% increase. In the new Member States, Romania remained the major market for buses and coaches despite a 14.9% decrease in February registrations. Cumulative first two months figures for bus and coach registrations show a slight decrease in the new Member States (-3%) and a 16% increase in Western Europe.
* Please note that the ACEA press release on commercial vehicles has been covering Bulgaria and Romania since January 2008.