Future-driven technologies such as connectivity, advanced safety, and autonomous features driving the global LCV market toward recovery amid COVID-19 disruptions
Frost & Sullivan’s recent analysis, Global Light Commercial Vehicle (LCV) Market Outlook, 2020, finds that global sales of LCVs are projected to reach 9.49 million units in 2020, with Pick-ups contributing to 4.62 million units. The global economic impact of COVID-19 caused the market to decline by 19% in global LCV sales from 11.72 million units in 2019. The European market is experiencing the worst hit as countries such as Italy and Spain are facing an average decline in LCV sales of 35% to 50% in 2020.
“Strong stimulus packages from the Governments will be necessary to support the economy and cope with low business confidence and high unemployment rate, which stemmed from nationwide lockdowns during the pandemic,” said Marshall Martin, Industry Analyst, Automotive & Transportation, at Frost & Sullivan. “The 2020 slowdown will be particularly pronounced across advanced economies such as the United States, Germany, Italy, and Japan.”
E-commerce and connectivity will continue to drive the global LCV market as last-mile delivery and electrification are expected to grow in influence in the coming years. With restrictions on geographical movement during the COVID-19-induced lockdown, e-commerce and last-mile delivery applications will see a spike in demand to deliver essentials at doorsteps.
He added: “Electric light commercial vehicles (eLCVs) will continue to gain prominence going forward with a slew of launches expected until 2023. Emerging trends in the market, such as connectivity, advanced safety, and autonomous features, offer great opportunities for the growth of the global LCV market in the next three to five years.”
The market outlook in key regional markets will vary considerably. The main trends and growth opportunities in each key region are presented below:
North America: LCVs are expected to be on the decline for the rest of the year, with full-size Pick-ups expected to be the most affected because of the slowdown in the construction sector.
Europe: The region is expected to have a fairly good penetration of eLCVs compared to other regions going forward, with several new launches such as the PSA Citroen e-Dispatch and VWCV e-Transporter expected in 2020.
China: The market in China is expected to pick up gradually from Q2 2020 as the recent growing domestic demand for Pick-ups has pushed local OEMs to create more open back truck products.
India: The growing penetration of e-commerce and last-mile connectivity will drive the segment to experience robust growth in the next five to 10 years.
LATAM: The region is expected to remain under further downward pressure with falling commodity prices due to COVID-19, and the market will likely decline by 17% in 2020.
Russia: The LCV market in Russia is expected to contract by 16% in 2020, coupled with falling oil prices and threat of sanctions.
APAC: 2020 is expected to be a turning point for the penetration of eLCVs in the larger ASEAN region with substantial investment coming from OEMs and fleets.
GCC: Despite the record-low oil prices, the market in the GCC is experiencing a boost in e-commerce, which provides opportunities in the region’s logistics sector.