Truck Industry Council unmoved by heavy-duty sales shift

Hope held out for slight recovery in June but confidence is lacking


The Truck Industry Council (TIC) has reiterated its concern at the state of the heavy-duty truck market, despite a somewhat better performance in June.

TIC CEO Tony McMullan notes that while year-to-date sales at the end of June were up over those of 2014, he remained concerned by the segment’s continued weakness.

"It is encouraging to see a good result in June and overall year-to date sales for 2015, however as we have seen so far this year, this result is brought about by some very good light duty truck light-duty  van sales, while heavy-truck sales continue to lag those of recent years," McMullan says.

"Heavy-truck sales showed a slight recovery in June and I can only hope that this is the turning point for better sales at the top end of the market for the rest of 2015.

"However, I still remain concerned that there appears to be a general lack of business confidence in the Australian market at present and it appears that companies are continuing to delay their big dollar fleet replacement plans."

TIC nites that first-half sales, are just 5.5 per cent up on the same period in 2014, which was down 4.7 per cent on 2013, "hence the net market gain over the past two years is minimal.

"To put the current half year result into perspective, sales lag the record pre-GFC 2008 half year result of 18,218 unit sales by 3,078 vehicles, a short fall of 17 per cent."

The medium-duty segment posted average sales in 2014 and this ‘average’ trend has continued.

June saw total sales of 657 units, down 3 per cent, or 20 units, on June 2014.

While the year-to-date first-half result was 3,067, medium-duty sales are marginally ahead of the same period in 2014 by 1.7 per cent, or 52 trucks. 

Light-duty sales have seen good growth in 2015 and June was another strong month.

A "healthy" 1,047 units were delivered in June, up 29.4 per cent (238 trucks) over June 2014. 

For the half year, light duty sales are ahead of the same period in 2014 by 14.4 per cent, or 577 trucks.

Light-duty vans posted another great month of sales in June with a total of 672 unit sales, up a "very healthy" 32.3 per cent, or 164 units, compared with June 2014. 

 The half-year tally stands at 2,857 units, this being up 29.9 per cent (657 vans) compared with that of 2014.

"This is the strongest first half year van result ever posted, easily eclipsing the previous best mark of 2,233 sales set in the first half of 2008," TIC says.


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