EU Commercial Vehicles registrations down 44.4% in May; -36.7% 5 months into 2020

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In May 2020, EU commercial vehicle registrations decreased by 44.4%, although the decline was less pronounced than in April as measures to contain COVID-19 were relaxed.

Total new commercial vehicles

ACEA, the European body for the automotive industry has stated that in May 2020, EU commercial vehicle registrations decreased by 44.4%, although the decline was less pronounced than in April as measures to contain COVID-19 were relaxed. Demand fell across all commercial vehicle segments, contributing to the sharp decline recorded last month. Looking at the four largest markets of the EU, Spain (-59.0%) and Germany (-47.9%) saw the biggest losses in May, followed by Italy (-36.5%) and France (-35.0%).
Five months into the year, demand for new commercial vehicles in the European Union shrank 36.7%, owing to three months of steep declines. Each of the 27 EU markets posted double-digit percentage drops so far this year, with Lithuania (-55.7%) and Spain (-49.3%) showing the highest.

New light commercial vehicles (LCV) up to 3.5t

Last month, demand for vans fell by 41.3% to 92,604 units. Compared to the month before, when sharp drops of more than 80% were posted, Spain (-58.7%), Italy (-35.3%) and France (-32.9%) saw a slight recovery of the market. Germany, on the other hand, recorded a higher percentage decline (-45.5%) than in April.

From January to May, the EU market for new light commercial vehicles contracted by 36.4%. Among the four major markets, Spain suffered the biggest drop in demand (-51.2%), followed by Italy (-42.4%), France (-40.3%) and Germany (-26.6%).

Ireland’s downturn in the LCV sector during May was even more significant, recording -70.30%, -31.26% year-to-date.

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

During the fifth month of 2020, new heavy truck registrations fell by 59.7% to 11,783 units. Demand in Central Europe was severely hit (-74.5%), with Estonia, Lithuania, Bulgaria and Hungary seeing percentage losses of more than 80%. The four major Western European markets also posted negative results, especially Spain (-62.1%) and Germany (-58.0%). By contrast, Cyprus and Greece were the only EU member states to post growth last month.

So far in 2020, 76,232 heavy trucks were registered across the European Union, down 41.1% compared to the same period one year before. Demand contracted by 41.9% in France, followed by Germany (-36.8%), Spain (-32.1%) and Italy (-29.0%).

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

In May 2020, EU demand for trucks decreased by 56.9%, marking the 11th consecutive month of decline. Germany remained the leading market for medium and heavy commercial vehicles with 4,535 units registered, though that was only half the number of trucks sold a year before (-54.6%). Spain (-58.9%), France (-47.0%) and Italy (-41.3%) reported similar drops in demand.

Five months into 2020, the European Union counted 95,174 new trucks registered in total, or 38.6% less than during the same period last year. France (-41.0%) saw the biggest percentage drop, followed by Germany (-33.4%), Spain (-30.9%) and Italy (-29.4%).

The situation in Ireland is even more serious with -59.46% decline in new registrations during May, with fiqures for the first five months showing -13.58%.

New medium and heavy buses & coaches (MHBC) over 3.5t

Last month, bus and coach registrations fell (-56.5%) across the EU, counting 1,583 units (compared to 3,636 in May 2019). Only four of the 27 EU markets posted positive results in May 2020: Cyprus, the Czech Republic, Finland and Sweden. The other 23 markets, including the four major ones, recorded double-digit declines last month.

From January to May, demand for buses and coaches in the European Union contracted by 33.2%, with 10,125 new vehicles registered across the region in total. Registrations fell more than half in Spain (-54.3%), while France (-21.5%), Germany (-17.0%) and Italy (-13.6%) noted more modest decreases.

According to the SIMI, Irish sales of new buses and coaches dropped 65.11% YTD.