Although the Truck Industry Council will have you think otherwise, the market remains in good shape despite a slight dip on February 2016 sales.
Last month saw 2,227 units sold with growth in the light duty market, and although it was 10 per cent less than the same period last year, year-to-date sales are still 2.2 per cent up on 2016 thanks to a bumper January result.
While only the light duty recorded growth on the same time last year, it should be noted 2016 saw a spike in sales during February, which was up a staggering 19.6 per cent on 2015.
“The first two months of 2017 have seen somewhat polar new truck and van sales. After January’s results were known, I cautioned about getting ahead of ourselves. The combination of January and February sales shows a normalisation of the market in 2017, which is now tracking slightly ahead of 2016,” said CEO of the Truck Industry Council, Tony McMullan.
“Due to the volatility seen in the first two months of this year we will have to wait another month, or two, before we can truly gain a sense of where the Australian heavy commercial vehicle market may track in 2017.”
TIC president Phil Taylor said it’s not uncommon for the start of the year to bring mixed results.
“Boom and bust would be a good way to describe the first two months of 2017 for new truck sales in Australia. After a great start to the year in January, sales certainly took a hit this month,” Taylor said.
“Of-course fluctuating sales in the first couple of months of a new year are not unusual and we should see sales steady by the end of the first quarter.”
The Light Duty segment saw 808 sales, up nine units on last year, and taking the total to 1,411 for the year. The sector is up 11.2 per cent year-to-date on the same time in 2016.
The Medium Duty sector was the only one that took a true hit with a dip of 5.5 per cent and 465 deliveries. With a total of 842 for the year, the medium duty market is down two per cent year-on-year.
February brought 658 Heavy Duty sales, and though its 1.9 per cent down on last year – year-to-date figures are tracking 2.5 per cent better off.
While truck sales remained strong, it was a tough month for light duty vans with just 345 vans delivered, down 215 for the month or 38.4 per cent.
Year-to-date van sales sit at 886, down 7.1 percent on the same time in 2016 despite record figures last month.