The new heavy goods vehicle (HGV) market declined -5.7% in the third quarter of 2017, with 10,597 units registered, according to figures released today by the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT). The fall mirrors similar recent declines in the new van and car markets, as ongoing political and economic uncertainty begins to knock business confidence.
Demand for rigid vehicles declined -7.4% in quarter three, with a -5.5% fall in the >6-16T segment and a -8.4% decrease in the >16T segment. Meanwhile, registrations of artic vehicles also experienced a fall, down -3.3% to 4,383 units. Tractors continued to be the most popular body type for HGVs in quarter three, accounting for 41.4% of the heavy goods vehicle market.
Year-to-date figures show the overall market remains steady, currently up 0.3%, with 32,774 trucks featuring advanced low emission and safety technology joining British roads in 2017. Although demand for rigid vehicle registrations declined -2.4% in the first nine months, this was offset by a 4.6% rise in demand for arctic trucks.
Mike Hawes, SMMT Chief Executive, said, “Fluctuating fleet orders are a natural feature of the HGV market, so this drop in demand is not altogether unexpected. However, economic and political uncertainty is undoubtedly also having an effect. It is vital that government tackles this to give operators the confidence to invest in renewing their fleets with the latest, cleanest Euro VI vehicles – and to ensure this important sector’s ongoing success.”