UK new van market finishes year down -20.0 per cent


New van registrations ended 2020 down -20.0%, according to the latest figures by the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT). This rounded off the year in decline following three months of growth.

292,657 vehicles were registered in 2020, as the impact of Covid and uncertainty over Brexit brought down demand toward the end of the year, with registrations in the final month of the year dropping -1.0%, although this volume is consistent with previous Decembers.

All van segments saw a decrease in the year, with small vans weighing less than or equal to 2.0 tonnes down -34.4%, medium vans weighing more than 2.0-2.5 tonnes down -15.6% and larger vans weighing more than 2.5-3.5 tonnes down -16.5%. Demand for new pickups and 4x4s fell by -32.7% and -10.6% respectively.

Mike Hawes, SMMT Chief Executive, said, “It’s been a truly extraordinary and testing year for the commercial vehicle sector. From keeping services running, to getting key workers, goods and medicines from A to B, manufacturers and operators alike have adapted to multiple unpredictable challenges. Undeniably the LCV market, having shrunk by a fifth, has a lot of hurdles to overcome as we enter 2021. However, investment in fleet renewal will be key to driving recovery, and the sector’s resilience, now coupled with added clarity over UK-EU trading relations and the rollout of vaccines, offers hope for both the van market and the wider economy.”