Vans are the fastest growing vehicle group

Nearly every kind of vehicle has seen a crash in sales in the last year, due to showrooms being shut and buying patterns changing with the pandemic.

Just 90,249 cars were registered in January 2021 compared with 149,279 in 2020, making it “the worst start to the year since 1970” according to SMMT.

 

Medium-sized vans are most in demand

One area with plenty of growth is medium-sized vans (2.5 to 3.5 tonnes). Light commercial vehicle registrations have shot up 25% since last year, showing that the era of the van driver is still going strong.

The Financial Times reported in December 2020 that drivers are the most in-demand employees in the UK, followed by construction workers.

We’ve needed a lot of van drivers to keep this country running during the pandemic, and that’s only increasing as people get more used to having everything delivered.

It’s no surprise, given its status as the most popular van of all time – but the Ford Transit Custom is 2021’s number for sales so far.

 
Van registrations have risen 25% in 2021
 

Electric and hybrids up 54%

Despite every other type of car sinking like a stone, electric vehicles now account for 6.9% of the market, having seen a 54% rise in uptake. There are 40 models available in 2021, compared with 22 in January 2019.

The rise in popularity of electric and hybrids means the cleanest ever year for average C02 emissions in newly registered vehicles: a drop of 11.8% from last year.

More to be done, but great progress for cleaner cars.