Figures released by the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) show that the number of light commercial vehicle (LCV) registrations for March dropped 0.9% compared to the same month in 2016.
This follows the more significant drop in sales of 4.3% in February 2017.
Mike Hawes, SMMT Chief Executive, called the dip in registrations “a natural rebalancing of the market” after the record-high-year of 2016.
Hawes noted that 2017’s year-to-date registrations match those of 2015. “We expect demand to remain stable at this high level throughout the year”.
March saw a total of 63,316 LCVs registered, compared to 63,913 in the same period last year. 2017’s 0.9% decline is the first time registrations of new LCVs have fallen since March 2012.
The upward trend in the demand for pick-ups continued. 9,660 pick-ups were registered last month, compared with 7,856 in March 2016, an increase of 23%. There was also a 3.6%-spike in the number of new 2.5-3.0-tonne vans that were registered.
In relation to March 2016, small sub-2.0-tonne vans saw the biggest percentage drop of 31.6%, down to 4,804 units, whilst demand for 2.0-2.5-tonne vans decreased by 4.0% to 8,496. The only increase in registrations was in the 2.5-3.5-tonne category which saw a rise of 3.6% to 40,237 from 38,847.