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UK Cars and Commercial Vehicles market report

Everything you need to make the right decisions

Providing the most comprehensive and up-to-date information and analysis of the Cars and Commercial Vehicles market, and the behaviours, preferences and habits of the consumer.

Mintel has the answers you’re looking for

What are the key challenges facing the industry and how fast are its rates of growth? Who is the consumer and what do they want? Where are the opportunities, where are the risks and what lies ahead?

Covered in this Report

For the purposes of this Report, Mintel has used the following definitions:

  • Passenger cars: a road motor vehicle, other than a motor cycle, intended for the carriage of passengers and designed to seat no more than nine persons.
  • Commercial vehicles: a road motor vehicle used primarily for carrying goods: ranging from light commercial vehicles, such as vans and vehicles up to 3.5 tonnes; to heavy commercial vehicles, essentially lorries. However, it excludes buses, coaches and taxis.

What you need to know

Automotive registrations and production both fell in 2017, the culmination of Brexit uncertainties, a lull in consumer confidence and the ongoing shift away from diesel. Nonetheless, both these figures remain historically high, among the highest recorded in recent decades.

The image of vehicles on British roads continues to change, driven by the shift towards hybrid and alternatively-fuelled vehicles (AFV). However, despite growing at an inexorable rate since the turn of the decade, the AFV sector remains in its infancy, though this should change considerably in the coming years, with many upholding electric as the future of the British and global automotive industry.

The market is set to enter a period of significant uncertainty in the coming years, underpinned by the need to renegotiate international trade deals across the global marketplace, alongside access to the European single market. Exports remain fundamental to the market’s prosperity, so the need for immediate action and a transitional deal is pivotal. The latter was agreed in principle in March 2018, to run to December 2020; however, it remains conditional on both sides (the UK government and the EU) agreeing a final withdrawal treaty.

Market Segmentation

Passenger Cars

Commercial Vehicles

Alernatively-fuelled Vehicles:

  • Plug in (pure electric)
  • Plug in (other electric)
  • Hybrid (petrol electric)
  • Hybrid (diesel electric)

Company Profiles

  • Daimler UK
  • Ford Motor Co Ltd
  • Peugeot Motor Company Ltd
  • Volkswagen Group UK Ltd
  • Volvo Group UK Ltd

Expert analysis from a specialist in the field

Written by Marco Amasanti, a leading analyst in the B2B sector, his extensive knowledge delivers in-depth commentary and analysis to highlight current trends and add expert context to the numbers.

The cars and commercial vehicle market contracted in 2017 amidst political and economic uncertainty and the decline of diesel. This followed two years of bumper sales and production. Last year’s slump was underpinned by low domestic demand, which fell in line with wavering business and consumer confidence. Marco Amasanti
B2B Analyst

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Table of contents

  1. Overview

    • What you need to know
      • Covered in this Report
      • Executive Summary

          • The market
            • Following record sales in 2016, the industry is set to face a period of difficulty
              • Figure 1: UK total vehicle registrations and forecast, 2013-2022
            • Production fell in 2017
              • Figure 2: Total vehicle production, 2013-2017
            • Decline in diesel and the rise of alternatively-fuelled vehicles
              • Figure 3: Decline in diesel and growth in AFV registrations, 2013-2017
            • The global market
              • Low consumer confidence
                • Companies and brands
                  • Expansion of electric offerings
                    • Heavy investment in Chinese market
                      • What we think
                      • Issues and Insights

                        • Brexit and potential trade barriers
                          • The facts
                            • The implications
                              • Demonisation of diesel
                                • The facts
                                  • The implications
                                  • The Market – What You Need to Know

                                    • Total vehicle registrations and production fell in 2017
                                      • Alternatively-fuelled vehicles continue to enjoy uptake
                                        • The market is set to face a period of great uncertainty
                                        • Market Size

                                          • Registrations
                                            • Figure 4: Total vehicle registrations, 2013-2017
                                          • Production
                                              • Figure 5: Total vehicle production, 2013-2017
                                          • Market Segmentation

                                            • Passenger cars
                                              • Figure 6: Passenger car registrations and production, 2013-2017
                                            • Commercial vehicles
                                              • Figure 7: Commercial vehicle registrations and production, 2013-2017
                                            • Alternatively-fuelled vehicles
                                                • Figure 8: Alternatively-fuelled vehicles registrations, 2013-2017
                                            • Market Forecast

                                              • Industry set to face a period of uncertainty
                                                • Figure 9: UK vehicle registration forecast, 2018-2022
                                              • Commercial vehicles to be less impacted
                                                • Cars
                                                  • Commercial vehicles
                                                    • Figure 10: UK vehicle registration forecast, by cars and commercial vehicles, 2018-2022
                                                  • The decline of diesel
                                                    • Figure 11: UK forecast for new diesel cars, 2017-2019
                                                  • Correlating growth in AFVs
                                                  • The Impact of the Economy

                                                    • Inflation surpassed wage growth in 2017, but there are signs of change in 2018
                                                      • Growing scrutiny on car financing
                                                      • Market Trends

                                                        • Consumer confidence
                                                          • Figure 12: Mintel financial confidence tracker, January 2016-April 2018
                                                        • Further Vehicle Excise Duty increases
                                                          • Figure 13: Vehicle Excise Duty, April 2017-April 2018
                                                        • Growth in the fleet sector
                                                            • Figure 14: Car registrations by sales type, % of total, 2017
                                                          • The global market
                                                            • Figure 15: UK top car export destinations, 2017
                                                        • Companies and Brands – What You Need to Know

                                                          • Consecutive growth across Infrastructure
                                                            • The move to electric and the phasing out of diesel
                                                              • Mergers and Acquisitions
                                                              • Industry Structure

                                                                • Industry Development
                                                                  • Changes in the structure of the industry
                                                                      • Figure 16: Analysis of changes in the structure of the cars and commercial vehicles industry, by number of outlets and businesses, 2013-2017
                                                                    • Structure by turnover
                                                                      • Figure 17: Analysis of the financial structure of the cars and commercial vehicles industry, by turnover and number of businesses, 2016 and 2017
                                                                    • Structure by employment
                                                                      • Figure 18: Analysis of the employment structure of the cars and commercial vehicles industry, by number of businesses, 2016 and 2017
                                                                  • Competitive Strategies

                                                                    • Electric vehicles
                                                                      • Growing Chinese interest
                                                                        • Plans to phase out diesel engines
                                                                        • Company Profiles

                                                                          • Daimler UK
                                                                            • Recent company activity
                                                                              • Financial information
                                                                                • Figure 19: Financial analysis of Daimler, 2013-2017
                                                                              • Ford Motor Co Ltd
                                                                                • Recent company activity
                                                                                  • Financial information
                                                                                    • Figure 20: Financial analysis of Ford Motor Co Ltd, 2012-2016
                                                                                  • Peugeot Motor Company Ltd
                                                                                    • Recent company activity
                                                                                      • Financial information
                                                                                        • Figure 21: Financial analysis of Peugeot Motor Co Ltd, 2012-2016
                                                                                      • Volkswagen Group UK Ltd
                                                                                        • Recent company activity
                                                                                          • Financial information
                                                                                            • Figure 22: Financial analysis of Volkswagen Group UK Ltd, 2012-2016
                                                                                          • Volvo Group UK Ltd
                                                                                            • Recent company activity
                                                                                              • Financial information
                                                                                                • Figure 23: Financial analysis of Volvo Group UK Ltd, 2012-2016
                                                                                            • Appendix – Data Sources, Abbreviations and Supporting Information

                                                                                                • Abbreviations
                                                                                                  • Methodology
                                                                                                  • Further Sources and Contacts

                                                                                                    • Trade associations
                                                                                                      • Trade magazines
                                                                                                        • Trade events