The Light Commercial Vehicle business in Europe has always been one of low margins and high volume. That’s why so many LCV models are co-developed in alliances of automakers who would otherwise be each others rivals. Some of these alliances have been in place and successful for decades, take for example the “Sevel Sud” alliance between Fiat and PSA Peugeot-Citroën, which has been producing the Fiat Ducato, Peugeot Boxer (originally known as J5) and Citroën Jumper/Relay (originally the C25) since 1981. However, in the upcoming few years, some of these alliances are due for a shake-up as a result of two new partnerships in the European car landscape. The first one is a cooperation between PSA and General Motors, even though this partnership already been reduced from its initial target, it will still involve Light Commercial Vehicles, and the other is the tightening of the relationship between Renault-Nissan and Daimler. Each of these four automakers already have tie-ups with other brands in the LCV market, most notably the cooperation between General Motors and Renault-Nissan. [Read more…]
It’s taken a while, but we can now present you the European LCV sales top-10 for 2014, following up on the 2009-2013 LCV ranking published last year. Light Commercial Vehicle sales increased 13,2% in 2014 to 1,55 million, the highest figure in the past 6 years, as a result of pent-up demand from an aging fleet as a result of postponed replacement during the crisis years. The market has slightly fragmented as the share of the top-10 brands has shrunk from 89,4% in 2013 to 88,6% in 2014.
Also read our article about the changing alliances in the European LCV market.
Most LCV sales are from small, medium and large cargo vans, as pick-up trucks are much less popular in Europe than they are in the rest of the world. In France and to a lesser extent in the UK, commercial versions of passenger cars are also commonplace, but these cars are still a fraction of total light commercial vehicle sales in Europe.
Despite a gain of 9,6% and adding almost 20.000 units to its European sales, Renault has lost half a percentage point of its market share, as both Volkswagen and especially Ford improved even further. Ford is boosted by the complete renewal of its commercial van line-up, which now consists of 4 models, ranging from the small Transit Courier to the full-sized Transit. As a result, for the first time ever, three brands have sold more than 200.000 LCVs in Europe.
For the first time, and after many requests from readers interested in this data, I can share recent data on European LCV sales. Between 2009 and 2013, light commercial vehicle sales in Europe have fluctuated between 1,3 million and 1,55 million, with the top-10 best selling brands accounting for over 90% of sales. Eight brands in the top-10 are European, with two Japanese manufacturers competing in the bottom half of the top-10 with either clones of European vans or an in-house van produced locally in the continent.
LCV sales include mainly sales of cargo vans, which are available in four size categories in Europe, but also pick-up trucks, a category that’s hugely popular in the United States and other parts of the world, but not so in Europe, where less than 100.000 pick-ups are sold annually. Commercial versions of passenger cars and SUVs are also included in the LCV sales, but outside of France these types of vehicles make up just a small percentage of total light commercial vehicle sales in Europe. [Read more…]