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Prime Mover Magazine

Truck sales off to promising start

The year in truck sales has commenced with a solid January according to the Truck Industry Council.

A total of 2,196 units were sold, a small decrease of 1.4 per cent on 2018 but just 51 vehicles less than the all time January sales record registered in 2008.

Sales last month affirm strong and continuing investment were being made in the road transport industry despite the not uncommon slowing of business in the final quarter, with 2018 no exception.

The January result for Heavy Duty trucks sold was 769 units surpassing last year’s figure by 13 trucks, an increase of 1.7 per cent.

It’s the second best January for sales in the Heavy Duty category on record.

The Medium Duty segment was also up over the 2018 January result, with 440 Medium truck deliveries confirmed last month.

It represented a small gain of 0.7 per cent in the category.

Hopes of the Medium Duty segment reclaiming the record set for it in 2008 (551 units sold) are likely misplaced given the TIC has previously reported it as a shrinking market.

Year-on-year improvements seen in the Light Duty sector over the past two years are also unlikely to be repeated.

In January a total of 591 Light Duty vehicles were sold, an 8.4 per cent decrease on the same month the previous year.

A modest increase in Light Duty Van sales of 1.8 per cent on the previous January was recorded with seven more units sold for a total of 396.

That slight upturn made it the second best result for Light Van Sales for the month of January on record.

This January, according to CEO of Truck Industry Council, Tony McMullan, was a strong start to the year, especially in the Heavy and Medium Duty truck segments, which he said were pleasing as they reversed the slowing seen in these segments in the last quarter of 2018.

“I generally remark at this time of year, January and even February sales, are subject to fluctuations and some inconsistencies due to the transition of supplying trucks from one year to the next and the summer holiday season,” he said.

“One should not read too much into the January result. We will have a much better indication of how the market is tracking for the year at the end of the first quarter, once January, February and March numbers are in and the market has had a chance to normalise.”

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