Demand decreasing for Commercial Vehicle segments across Europe

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According to ACEA, the European body for automotive manufacturers, commercial vehicle registrations during February 2020, fell by 6.2% across the European Union.

Demand decreased in all vehicle segments, apart from buses and coaches. With the exception of France (+1.6%), all major markets contracted during that month: Germany (-7.6%), Spain (-5.9%) and Italy (-4.0%). Ireland recorded contrasting figures with heavy commercial sales increasing with light commercials in decline.

From January to February, the EU commercial vehicle market declined by 8.9% to 308,350 units. Spain (-12.8%), Germany (-7.6%), France (-3.6%) and Italy (-3.5%) all saw a decrease in demand for commercial vehicles so far this year.

February figures show a drop in registrations of light commercial vehicles for the second month in a row (-4.0%), albeit at a slower rate than in January. Three of the four largest EU markets posted negative growth last month: Italy (-6.2%), Spain (-5.9%) and Germany (-3.8%). By contrast, France performed better than in February 2019 (+3.0%).

During the first two months of 2020, EU demand for vans fell 7.1%. Each of the major EU markets performed worse than the year before. Spain recorded the highest drop (-13.2%), followed by Italy (-4.4%), Germany (-3.4%) and France (-2.9%).

New heavy commercial vehicles (HCV) of 16tonnes and over

In February, demand for new heavy trucks continued the downward trend that started last summer, marking the eighth consecutive month of decline in this segment (-19.3%). Results were diverse among the four key EU markets, with Italy posting growth (+10.6%) while Germany (-21.6%) and France (-15.4%) suffered double-digit losses.

Two months into the year, registrations of new heavy trucks declined in all major EU markets, with Germany (-24.0%) and France (-14.8%) showing the strongest drops. This brought the EU total down to 38,004 heavy trucks registered, or 20.6% less than during the first two months of 2019.

New medium and heavy commercial vehicles (MHCV) over 3.5tonnes

During the second month of 2020, new truck registrations in the EU decreased by 18.2% as a result of the slowdown in demand for heavy-duty trucks. Among the EU’s main markets, Germany (-20.6%) and France (-13.6%) followed this negative trend, both posting double-digit declines. On the other hand, truck registrations did increase in Italy (+9.7%) and Spain (+0.6%) last month.

Ireland recorded an increase of 6.64% with 257 units sold over 241 from the same period the year before.

Over the first two months of the year, 46,295 new trucks were registered across the European Union, down 18.7% compared to the year before. Mirroring their performance in the heavy‐truck segment, Germany (-20.5%) and France (-13.0%) recorded the highest losses, followed by Spain (-8.5%) and Italy (-1.2%).

Combined HGV registrations for January & February in Ireland were up by a record 101.36%, (592 units vs 294 – 2019). This was due in the main to a surge in registrations following the Brexit announcement, restoring confidence in business in general.

New buses & coaches                                                                                                      In February 2020, total registrations of buses and coaches in the European Union were 3.1% higher than in the same month last year. Germany (+33.6%), France (+32.1%) and Italy (+26.7%) posted solid growth during the second month of 2020, giving a boost to the region’s overall performance. However, demand for new buses and coaches fell significantly in Spain (-41.5%) last month.

From January to February, the European bus and coach market expanded by 4.6%, with 5,738 new vehicles registered in total across the EU. Demand increased in France (+29.4%), Italy (+19.9%) and Germany (+12.8%), while Spain recorded a decline (‐21.7%) compared to the same period last year. Irish numbers, although small showed an upturn of over 13% (92 units vs 81).