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UK LCV market up in July, bucking car trends

The UK new light commercial vehicle (LCV) market rose in July, up 11.0%, according to the latest figures released today by the SMMT.

Demand for medium and large vans drives growth, both segments rising by double digits
Demand for medium and large vans drives growth, both segments rising by double digits

Continuously bucking car market declines, the LCV market has grown in every month of 2019, with 25,862 new models registered in July, as operators were enticed by the range of new models and attractive market offers. However, this success has been propped up by vans, rather than car-based models.

The SMMT says medium vans, weighing 2.0-2.5 tonnes, drove demand, and large vans weighing 2.5-3.5 tonnes with the segments rising 17.2% and 16.9% respectively.

Pickups, 4x4s and smaller vans weighing less than 2.0 tonnes all saw declines in the month. In the year-to-date the market is up 9.0% and SMMT’s latest 2019 forecast has been revised up accordingly, to 363,000 units.

Mike Hawes, SMMT chief executive, said, “Another month of growth for the new van market is welcome relief for the automotive sector as it faces multiple challenges simultaneously. Buyers continue to be attracted to the latest, cleanest vans which is good news for the manufacturers that have invested significant amounts to create them, but also for the environment and exchequer. Buying cycles do fluctuate, however, and for this performance to continue we need an end to Brexit uncertainty starting with a favourable deal for the industry.”

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Written by Jonathan Musk

Jonathan turned to motoring journalism in 2013 having founded, edited and produced Autovolt - one of the UK's leading electric car publications. He has also written and produced books on both Ferrari and Hispano-Suiza, while working as an international graphic designer for the past 15 years. As the automotive industry moves towards electrification, Jonathan brings a near-unrivalled knowledge of EVs and hybrids to Fleet World Group.

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