|A Leyland DAR truck rolls down the assembly line in Lancashire|
According to the SMMT, commercial vehicle assembly in the UK took a stride in the right direction after years of reduced volume. Production came to 94,479 units, up 33.6% on the 2014 total of 70,731. Local demand and exports were evenly split at 50% each, not much different to 2014. Therefore both had similar, strong growth.
The main contributors are GM Vauxhall (vans) and Leyland DAF (trucks) which is part of the Paccar Group. Land Rover Defenders are also classed as commercial vehicles. They had a good year, as buyers scrambled for the last ones available due to production ending about now. Bus makers Alexander Dennis and Wrightbus would be the other main manufacturers, along with Dennis Eagle Trucks.
Now that the Defender is finished, another year of increase seems unlikely, and I wonder if the 2015 figure will even be matched. The LR Discovery also has a commercial model but is not made in large numbers. Still, the best year since 2012 (when Ford Transit production was ended) is something, and the huge increase something I didn't see coming.
|Near the end of 2015, the 1 millionth GM Vivaro van|
rolled off the Luton, Bedfordshire production line