Commercial vehicles: European demand for commercial vehicles rises for fourth year in a row

Brussels, 25/01/2008 - In 2007, the demand for new commercial vehicles in Europe was overall 6.8% higher than last year.

The European market ended the year with 7.1% more vans, 5.1% more trucks* and 4.4% more buses & coaches registered. The steady upward trend recorded throughout the year thanks to a healthy and dynamic European and foreign demand in the sector weakened somewhat in December. Van and bus & coach registrations went up by 1.8% and 43.3%, respectively, but the truck(*) market slightly declined (–1.6%). The calendar effect was limited since the number of working days varied widely in Europe1.(**).

New Light Commercial Vehicles up to 3.5t - "vans"

December van registrations in Europe (EU25+EFTA) rose at a slower pace (+1.8%) than in the preceding months of 2007. This came as a result of comparison with increased purchases at the end of 2006, linked to the January 2007 deadline for new vans to comply with Euro IV emission standards. Registrations in Western Europe remained stable and in the new EU member states mounted by 19.8%. Except for Germany (–13.9%), all the main markets posted growths. Italy and Spain reported the highest increases (+11.6% and 8.4%, respectively) and were followed by the UK (+3.4%) and France (+0.4%). Registrations fell in the majority of the remaining EU15 countries. Half of the new member states posted growths with the Czech Republic (+42.8%), Poland (+20.1%) and Slovakia (+15.6%) at the forefront. In total, 2,319,265 new vans were registered in Europe in 2007, or 7.2% more than in 2006. Western Europe and the new EU member states outperformed their last year’s registrations by 5.8% and 24.7%, respectively. With the exception of Denmark (–10.8%), all other markets improved their results.

New Heavy Commercial Vehicles over 16t (excluding Buses & Coaches) - "heavy trucks"

New heavy truck registrations in Western Europe went down by 3.2% in December 2007. This result was highly influenced by a huge one-off effect on the Dutch market (–78.7%). Heavy truck market in the Netherlands returned to its usual volume after December last year’s six-fold surge in registrations in consequence of the January 2007 change in the subsidy regime for Euro IV and V vehicles. All five main EU markets improved their results, with the strongest growth in the UK (+47.2%) and France (+26.3%). Registrations in the new member states increased by +32.2%, mainly thanks to a 82.1% growth in Poland. In 2007, the new heavy truck market in Europe was up by 7.3% thanks to a combination of a strong rise in the new member states (+47.4%) and a mild increase on Western European markets (+2.9%). Apart from the UK (–14.4%), the Netherlands (–13.5%) and Ireland (–5.9%), all other EU countries registered more heavy trucks than in 2006.

New Commercial Vehicles over 3.5t (excluding Buses & Coaches) - "trucks"

The European truck market (over 3.5 tonnes) declined by 1.6% in December 2007. Compared to the same month last year, there were 4.6% less new trucks registered in Western Europe and 21.3% more in the new member states. Sound increases on the British (+29.4%), French (+21.3%), Spanish (+5.9%) and Italian markets (+4.3%) did not offset a very deep correction on the Dutch market (–77.2%). Amongst the new member states, Poland and the Czech Republic recorded the highest results (+51% and 27%). New truck registrations in Europe continued to boom throughout the year (+5.1%), mainly helped by growth on the German (+5.5%), Spanish (+10.2%) and new EU member state markets (+38.9%).

New Buses & Coaches over 3.5t

Substantial December growth in new bus & coach registrations in Western Europe (+41.4%) and in the new member states (+74.1%) helped to improve the cumulative result in Europe (+4.4%). Western European markets outperformed their 2006 registrations by 4.9% and the new member remained on a downward slope (–4.7%).

* over 3.5 tonnes

** Italy, Spain, Romania +1, Germany –2, Bulgaria, Czech Rep., Denmark, Estonia, Slovakia, Sweden –1 or more

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