ACCORDING TO the German Association of the Automotive Industry, or Verband der Automobilindustrie ( VDA), the global commercial vehicle market expanded modestly in 2016. A total of 2.9 million trucks were sold that year, up by 6% from 2015.
“The most successful markets were China and Western Europe, both with double- digit growth rates. By contrast, business contracted significantly in the US and Brazil, as expected. This means that the global truck market again grew strongly in 2016, the year of the IAA Commercial Vehicles. The robust development in Western Europe is especially welcome – on a particularly important market for the German manufacturers. In 2017 the worldwide commercial vehicle market will at least equal last year’s level, and possibly slightly exceed it,” said Matthias Wissman, president of the VDA, in a statement.
China accounted for roughly onethird of the all the new heavy commercial vehicles sold in 2016. Sales in the country moved up 28% to 962,000 units. The Chinese market recorded year on year rises of 72% in November and 38% in December of last year. VDA said that the growth of the commercial vehicle market in China might slow down to 3% in 2017.
In Western Europe, the market for heavy commercial vehicles experienced an 11% increase in sales to 287,300 vehicles last year, the highest number since 2008. Double- digit increases were recorded in Italy, France and Spain. In UK, in spite of the Brexit vote, registrations rose 6%.
After six years of growth, the truck market in US suffered a reverse. VDA noted that sales were down by 11% to 400,400 units, and that this year, the market there might bear another loss, though not as large as last year’s.
New registrations of heavy trucks in Brazil, meanwhile, dropped 31% to 47,000 vehicles. The market in the country had already shrunk to half its size in the prior year.
“Brazil, a market that actually has great potential, is therefore still a cause for concern in the international truck business. It now remains to be seen whether the market will consolidate. Despite justified skepticism, if Brazil gets back on track this year, it could make big strides. That is shown by the volatility of the market that over the last ten years has always either increased or decreased at double- digit rates,” Mr. Wissman said.
India managed to conclude 2016 with a 7% rise in heavy truck volume, which totaled 298,600 units. VDA said the market in the country might grew 5% this year, topping the 300,000 mark.
Meanwhile, according to “Global Small Commercial Vehicle Market By Vehicle Type, By Region, Competition Forecast & Opportunities, 2011-2021” by the technology company ReportLinker, the global market of small commercial vehicles will reach $ 820 billion come 2021.
“Government initiatives in different countries [are] projected to enhance demand for small commercial vehicles over the next five years. As small commercia l vehicles are comparatively more fuel efficient and have
better outreach in terms of location, demand for small commercial vehicles across the globe is expected to increase during the forecast period,” the firm said in a statement.
It added that in 2015, of all regions, North America was leading in terms of generating demand, and it might maintain such a position over the course of the next five years.
Across the globe, a major factor in the growing demand for small commercial vehicles is the increasing number of small and medium- sized enterprises.
“SME industry primarily requires small commercial vehicles for intercity transportation of goods and raw materials. Rising demand for small commercial vehicles across the globe can be attributed to growing demand for transportation of products being manufactured by small and mediumscale industries,” ReportLinker said.
“Apart from growing number of small- scale businesses, constantly developing logistics industry across various countries is also driving demand for small commercial vehicles globally. Increased demand for intercity and intracity transportation of goods and people is further expected to aid growth in the global small commercial vehicle market during the forecast period.”