Rental company Europcar is reporting growth in its UK vans and trucks business, despite the lockdown period.

The good results were thanks in part to a very strong start to the year across most business units. While the rental of cars suffered under the lockdown, business from both new and existing customers kept revenues for UK vans and trucks relatively healthy.

Across different markets, Europcar saw a 2.6% increase year-on-year in revenue for the vans and trucks business unit in the first quarter of 2020, rising from €78.5m (£70.5m) to €80.6m. Nevertheless, revenue for vans and trucks was down by 14% in March.

The company says that demand from the home delivery market, UK crop growers, and the continuity of a number of key infrastructure and ground transportation contracts, has meant the doors at Europcar have remained open.

Stuart Russell, director, specialist vehicles, said: “We have not been immune to the effects of the COVID-19 lockdown. However, the fact that we have been able to offer our customers continuity of service across all of our product range throughout this challenging period, while keeping our teams safe at work, is testament to the dedication and devotion of all our staff. This coupled with the loyalty of our customer base has given us confidence that the Van and Truck strategy will continue to pay dividends.

“The financial news is good for the group, and we’re delighted to be making a positive contribution. We are over and above our planned year-on-year growth for 2020, and the pipeline indicates that this will carry on for the duration of this year.”