TIC fears election dampener effect on heavy truck sales

McMullan points to ‘fiscal caution’ that traditionally attends national polls

TIC fears election dampener effect on heavy truck sales
TIC CEO Tony McMullan has voiced fears on poll’s effect on spending.


The federal election is bound to act as a dampener on heavy truck sales, adding to what is already a very soft market, the Truck Industry Council (TIC) notes.

Truckmakers will have to look to the medium-duty and lighter end of the commercial vehicle market for growth after a "particularly poor result" in January in the heavy-duty segment.

The medium duty segment was up with 350 trucks sales for January 2016 verses 336 units sold in January 2015, a gain of 4.2 percent, TIC says.

Light duty trucks too were in positive territory up 4.7 percent with 470 deliveries for the month, compared with 449 sales for the same period in 2015.

"And there seems to be no stopping the light duty van segment up in January for the fourth consecutive year," TIC says.

"For the month a total of van sales were 326 were sold, up 4.5 percent, or 14 vehicles.

"This represents the best ever start to a year for the van segment, beating the previous best ever January result that was set last year."

Despite this, there was no hiding from what was generally the worst January for five years.

"It is another disappointing start to a new year for truck sales and the momentum of the latter part of 2015 has obviously not carried through to 2016," TIC CEO Tony McMullan says.

"I do take heart in the fact that medium and light truck as well as light van sales were all up compared to January 2015, however the continuing fall in heavy truck sales continues to be my greatest concern when reviewing these results.

"In 2015, we saw a slow start for new truck sales, but by year end the market was higher in all segments except Heavy truck, so we will be hoping for stronger sales over the coming months.

"However, unlike last year we face an important political event this year and given the fiscal caution that is typically exercised by many businesses in a federal election year, we will have to wait and see if truck sales do in fact build as the year progresses."


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