April trucks sales still in record territory

Scania shows year so far still red hot but total numbers ease off a touch

April trucks sales still in record territory
Scania has a very pleasing heavy-duty sales month in April

April commercial vehicle sales see the accelerator pressure lift a tiny bit but they remain in record territory for the month and year.

March’s scorching total of 3,558 gives way to last month’s 3,215 but that is still ahead of the best April in the past five years, beating out 2017’s 3,151, according to Tuck Industry Council (TIC) T-Mark statistics.

Where this April falls short against 2017 is in the year-to-date (YTD) figure, 11,540 to 11,826.

Of course, it remains to be seen how sustainable this year’s growth is, given March’s YTD comparison with March 2017 – 8,325 against 7,158 – was so much further in front.

Still, the market leading Japanese brands are still making a lot of hay in this sunny market, despite a slight slip.

Isuzu’s 788 is down 32 units on March, Hino’s 520 is 31 down, while Fuso fares a tad worse both in percentage and numbers, with 318 down 60.

Heavy Duty

The heavy brigade’s part in the latest boom has been fairly modest, the segment falling below four figures in April to 929 from March’s 1,035, putting it below 2018 and 2019 totals of 1,156 and 1,006 respectively.

The 3,366 YTD is also below those two years’ totals of 4,059 and 3,922 but there’s no shame in that.

Segment leader Kenworth scores a nice round 200 units for 697 YTD, compared with 2018’s 250/801 and 2019’s 174/746.

But Scania provides the surprise packet for the month, coming in second with 131 units for its best April in five years and a long way from April 2017’s 41 units. At YTD, its 349 still lags in fifth place but it remains no mean feat.

Fellow Swedish brand Volvo comes in third at 106/420, the month down from March’s 112, with a return to the glory days of April 2019’s 140/631 still awaited but its 420 YTD comfortably holding off the challengers.

Mercedes-Benz and Isuzu slip under three figures, down eight units to 98 and 14 to 88 respectively.

Most other makes slipped slightly bar Fuso, up two to 42 and International, up two to three.

Medium Duty

Month on month (MOM) was also a glide for the mid-range trucks in April, down to 564 from 602, but it still makes for the third-best April in the past five years, though just a single unit above April 2017’s 563.

See how the truck makes were fairing in March’s sales, here

However, 2,026 YTD is in more sold territory, against 2017’s 1,941. And that is on the right side of the 2,000 mark, given 2018 and 2019 were at 674/2,442 and 595/2,245. Pretty good for this mercurial segment.

Speaking of breathers, Hino’s tilt at Isuzu’s crown falters a tad, its 201 down 21 MOM compared to the market leader up one unit to 227 – though still below 2017’s 235. This after Hino gave it great rival a fright the previous month, falling five units shy of winning it.

Fuso fell four to 104 MOM, which is not bad, given it is the makes second best April in five years, behind 2018’s 106 and YTD just shy of that year, 371 against 381.

Light Duty

As noted before, the boiler room for truck figures is at the light end of the market and it is where records are being made.

The segments April comes in at 1,113, down from March’s 1,231 but, at 4,804 YTD it is streets ahead of the next highest, 2018’s 927/3,502.

Again, a little slippage was the general rule, with second-place Hino bucking the trend this time, up four units to 268 MOM with a YTD of 955. This compares favourably with last year’s 203/1,036, with both YTDs ahead of the next best, 2018’s 773.

Isuzu is down 19 to 473 but its YTD is tops the next best in five year, 2019’s 1,295.

Fuso lost 51 on last month to 172, second only to 2018’s 187 but its 731 YTD bests next best 2018’s 687.

Iveco’s push this year into three figures, on a par with April 2019’s 107, dies on its run, seeing it back from 103 to 56 and well under the other five years.

Meanwhile, Mercedes-Benz jumps 20 to 51, equal with Fiat, which lost four from March.

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