Lockdown sees LCV registrations drop by 86 per cent

Time 2:23 pm, May 5, 2020

The UK new LCV market dropped by 86.2 per cent in April because of the coronavirus crisis.

According to data published today (May 5) by the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT), just 3,387 LCVs were registered last month – 21,217 fewer than in April 2019.

They largely comprised rushed-through orders for frontline industries, including NHS fleets as well as vehicles for the emergency services plus pharmaceutical, food distribution and home delivery businesses.

The top-selling LCV in April was the Mercedes-Benz Sprinter, pictured, at 814 units, followed by the Peugeot Boxer at 301 and the Vauxhall Vivaro at number three with 257 examples sold.

Source: SMMT

Performance during the year to date has fallen by 44 per cent, with more than 56,000 fewer vehicles registered than during the same period in 2019.

The SMMT’s latest forecast expects an overall LCV market drop of 28 per cent for 2020, equalling a market of 263,000 units by the end of 2020.

Although a recovery in registrations is expected next year, it is still predicting a 6.1 per cent decline on 2019.

Mike Hawes, SMMT chief executive, said: ‘These figures, while not surprising, are still shocking. Restoring business confidence and delivering the safe restart of retail operations will be key to kick-starting demand.

‘Getting this important market moving again will be critical to the wider automotive sector’s recovery and provide a boost to the UK economy as we begin to emerge from this crisis.’

More: New car sales drop by 97.3 per cent in April 

More: Van sales plummet to lowest level in 20 years

John Bowman's avatar

John has been with Car Dealer since 2013 after spending 25 years in the newspaper industry as a reporter then a sub-editor/assistant chief sub-editor on regional and national titles. John is chief sub-editor in the editorial department, working on Car Dealer, as well as handling social media.

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