Big rise in van sales fuels LCV market
After sliding all year the market had risen 6.7 per cent in May, but dipped again 2.2 per cent in June.
The major jump of 10.2 per cent in July, to 18,913 units, has also produced stable rolling year figures, down just 0.1 per cent on 2011, with 248,452 registrations.
But year-to-date the market is still down 7.8 per cent and Paul Everitt, Chief Executive of the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) that compiled the figures, is still cautious.
“The van and rigid truck markets still have a way to go to hit pre-recession levels, but artic volumes have grown since October 2010 to reach levels not seen since 2008,” Everitt says.
Only 4x4s and 2.0-2.5-tonne vans failed to show growth in July, the pickup sector down 29.4 per cent with 375 registered, and 2.0-2.5-tonne vans down only half a per cent with 2,420 registered.
Pickups were up 38.9 per cent (1,929), sub-2-litre vans 26.8 per cent (3,197), and 2.5-3.5-tonne vans 6.8 per cent (10,992).
New editions with extra equipment have helped to boost van sales. The latest comes from Fiat, which has extended its Tecnico trim from the Ducato 35 Van 2.3 Litre 130 MultiJet II LWB HR to the Ducato 30 SWB version.
The Tecnico (pictured) gains such features as air conditioning, front fog lights, Blue&Me with steering wheel controls, TomTom sat nav, Start&Stop, special wheel trims and reverse parking sensors.
Words by: Andrew Charman