The light commercial vehicle market came under pressure last year but all-wheel drive models performed strongly, James Dallas reports.
The pick-up and 4x4 sectors provided the bright spots in an overall light commercial vehicle market that last year laboured under the strain of the economic uncertainty caused by the interminable Brexit wrangling and a fall in fleet purchases, and actually showed resilience to record a year-on-year decline of just 1.3% to 357,325 registrations.
Pick-up sales rose 4.3% in 2018 to 53,613 units, with the Ford Ranger making it into the top 10 at number seven on 16,440 sales, while the niche 4x4 sector rocketed 303% to a still comparatively tiny total of 1,795.
The market did catch a cold in December, however, with 3,745 pick-up trucks leaving showrooms – a fall of 8% year-on-year – leaving just the plucky 4x4 segment to buck the trend with a leap of 124% to 92 sales.
It was a busy year in the 4x4 sector with notable models arriving from Mitsubishi, in the shape of a Shogun Sport Commercial, and Toyota, with its Land Cruiser Utility Commercial.
Both are serious off-roaders, unlike the less rugged Dacia Duster Commercial, which has now departed the scene.