UK truck and van sales rise despite fragile economy

London, UK: “The commercial vehicle market has improved again in November, despite the economy remaining fragile.” said Sue Robinson, director of the RMI National Franchised Dealers Association which represents commercial vehicle and franchised car retailers across the UK.

Data from the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders show new van and truck sales month on month up 19.1% compared to November 2010 and up 24.4% on the rolling year.

Overall truck registrations were up 21.5% in comparison to November last year, while overall van registrations were up 18.6% on November last year.

Robinson said: “Overall van sales improved substantially last month, suggesting that confidence is beginning to improve in the small business sector.  It is likely business owners are investing in new vans prior to the introduction of the London Emission Zone (LEZ) scheme, which starts at the beginning of 2012.

“Although there was overall improvement in the sector, vans with a weight under 2 tonnes recorded a decline in sales of 6%.”  This size van is often purchased by businesses within the service industry, many of which have been adversely affected by the current retail downturn.

“Truck registrations continued to grow in November.  The sector that saw the strongest growth was the over 16 tonnes rigid trucks.” Owner-operators often purchase these vehicles and it is likely that like the van sector, sales are being encouraged by the impending LEZ scheme.

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