October CV registrations up 14%

SMMT figures show that commercial vehicle demand grew 27.0 per cent in October to 35,027 units, driving the market up 14.1 per cent to surpass 300,000 units.

Truck registrations saw a sharp upturn of 65.7 per cent to 8,457 units, marking the first month of growth for the market in 2014. Year-to-date levels remain down 9.2 per cent.

The van market continued its strong performance, up 18.2 per cent in October to 26,570 units, and up 18.1 per cent for the year-to-date.

“October marks the first month of 2014 in which truck registrations have seen positive growth, given the paucity of demand following the introduction of Euro-6. While encouraging, we should treat such a sharp percentage increase with caution, owing to a relatively small total market and new type approval regulations coming into force at the end of the month,” said Mike Hawes, SMMT chief executive. “Van registrations also performed well, yielding solid growth for the total commercial vehicle market.”

Commenting on the figures, Sue Robinson, director of the National Franchised Dealers Association which represents commercial vehicle and franchised car retailers across the UK, said: “It is positive to see that demand for commercial vehicles grew in October.” She continued: “Although we are pleased to see the first sign of truck growth in 2014, October saw the introduction of the complex new type-approval rules, meaning every truck has to be tested prior to registration. This could mean dealers needed to pre-register trucks in early October to avoid this costly and time consuming process.

“Rigid heavy trucks saw a significant increase of 122 per cent – confirming they were affected by the new type-approval rules, as these models are always fitted with bodywork that will need pre-testing before registration.

“We are hopeful that the truck market will remain buoyant for the remainder of 2014.”

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