Car sales statistics for the commercial van segment in the US, updated every quarter.

US sales 2017 first half: Small Commercial Van segment

Every single model loses sales, as the segment shrinks by almost 20%

US-sales-small-cargo-van-segmentOverall sales of Commercial Vans in the US fell again in the second quarter of 2017, albeit at a slower pace than in the first quarter, resulting in a cumulative drop in sales of 3.2% YTD. As I mentioned earlier, it seems that customers seem to be slowly moving away from commercial vans to pickups, at least to the extent that the latter are used for commercial purposes. Confirming this, the decline is concentrated in the small commercial van segment, which has lost 17.9% of its volume so far this year, while the large commercial vans segment, for which pickups are no substitute, seems largely unaffected.
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US sales 2017 first half: Large Commercial Van segment

Once segment golden boy Ford Transit suffers double-digit sales decline while segment grows slowlyUS large van segmentOverall sales of Commercial Vans in the US fell again in the second quarter of 2017, albeit at a slower pace than in the first quarter, resulting in a cumulative drop in sales of 3.2% YTD. However, this is mainly due to sales decline in the small commercial vans sector – sales in the large commercial vans sector have been growing so far in 2017, albeit at a leisurely 0.5% pace overall.
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US sales 2017-Q1 Commercial Van segment

US large van segmentSales of Commercial Vans in the US are down 5.4% in the first quarter of 2017 to 103,197 units, but this decline is completely due to small commercial vans, as all of the 5 players in this sub-segment lose by double digits for a 25.4% loss (to 17,882 sales), compared to stable sales for large commercial vans at 85,315 units. Keep in mind, these figures include both cargo vans and passenger vans. Small vans quickly gained popularity after new players emerged since 2013, after the Ford Transit Connect paved the way since 2009. The segment peaked at over 90,000 sales in 2015 and 2016, but that appears to have been the ceiling for its potential, at least at the current level of gas prices, which means companies prefer the added practicality of large vans or even pickup trucks over the efficiency of smaller vans. The large van segment peaked at almost 372,000 sales last year, the highest volume in 28 years, and a stable start of the year is a signal of continued strength of and confidence in the US economy.… Continue Reading …

US sales 2016 Large Commercial Vans segment

US large van segment

Sales in the Large Commercial Vans segment rose by 15.4 percent in 2016 to 377,971 vehicles, the highest level they have been in the past decade. While 2017 is unlikely to bring any big changes to the segment lineup, sales are likely to continue rising at the clear expense of the Small Commercial Vans segment, as long as gas prices don’t rise too quickly.

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US sales 2016 Small Commercial Vans segment

US small van segment

Sales in the Small Commercial Vans segment fell by 10.4 percent in 2016 to 84,408 vehicles, the first time that annual sales in the segments have declined since  Ford Transit Connect kicked-off the segment as we know right now in 2009. Low fuel costs are holding back sales as American business generally prefer Large Commercial Vans or Pickup Trucks instead. With no likely new entrants in 2017, the segment’s fortune depends square on customers’ expectation of what gas prices will do in the near future.

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US sales Q1-Q3 2016 Large Commercial Vans segment

 

US large van segment

Sales in the Large Commercial Vans segment rose by 15 percent in Q3 to 89,788 vehicles. This continues a good trend for the segment, whose sales have increased by 18 percent so far this year, and comes at a clear expense of the Small Commercial Vans segment, which barely grew over the same time period. 

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US sales Q1-Q3 2016 Small Commercial Vans segment

 

US small van segment

Sales in the Small Commercial Vans segment fell by 14 percent in Q3 2016 to 19,466 vehicles, a reversal of fortune after registering an average sales growth of 8 percent in the first half of the year. Low fuel costs are holding back sales as American business generally prefer Large Commercial Vans or Pickup Trucks instead. Still, the segment has gained sales year to date, and it may be that, in preparation for the holiday season, sales will yet rebound in 2016.

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US sales first half 2016 Full-Size Commercial Vans segment

Large-commercial-van-segment-US-sales-2015

Sales of Large Commercial Vans in the US rose by 13% in Q1 2016 to 104,535 vehicles, after an impressive 28% gain in Q1. At +19% in the first half, the large vans therefore not only outsell, but also outgrow the small commercial vans which show an 8% growth rate. Low fuel prices undoubtedly have lured businesses to the larger vans, although the more efficient Euro-style vans from Ford, FCA and Mercedes-Benz continue to win market share from the old-fashioned truck-based body-on-frame vans from GM and Nissan.

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US sales first half 2016 Small Commercial Vans segment

US-sales-small-cargo-van-segment

Sales of Small Commercial Vans in the US rose by 6% in Q2 2016 to 24,162 vehicles, after an increase of 11% in the first quarter. Low fuel costs are weighing down on the segment, as some businesses might prefer a large cargo van instead. Still, considering their practical size for small deliveries and their manoeuverability, I believe there’s a market for vans this size in the US as well. The Mercedes-Benz Metris (as the Vito is called in the US) falls right inbetween the two cargo van segments, but its premium pricing puts in closer to the large commercial van segment. Bear in mind these figures also include the passenger versions of these vehicles, an area where Ford is particularly strong with the Transit Connect, and which Nissan is trying to break through with its taxi versions of the NV200, most notably as the new standard for New York City cabs.

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US sales Q1 2016 Full-Size Cargo Vans segments

Large-commercial-van-segment-US-sales-2015

Sales of Large Cargo Vans in the US rose by 28% in Q1 2016 to 86,460 vehicles, considerably faster than the 11% rate of growth recorded by the Small Cargo Van segment. While most models in the segment gained sales over this period, the standout remains the Ford Transit, which now accounts for 40% of the market.

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