Construction: registration of struggling carriers and body vehicles

Energy and cost inflation, not to mention recruitment challenges for heavy-duty vehicle-driving occupations, are also hitting the industrial vehicle (IV) market, which must ensure its energy transition as best it can.

Two years of Covid, followed by the start of the Ukraine conflict, will have scratched the world economy. “Also, 2023 promises to be a key year of economic and energy transition, with all markets shrinking,” declares Arnaud Villeger, the new director of the Industrial Transport Observatory, immediately succeeding Jean-Michael Mercier. The (very specific) factors all point in the same direction. Mixed, the condition of companies is deteriorating, investment intentions in new vehicles are decreasing (source FNTR), this indicates a slowdown in fleet renewal, construction costs and price indices in TP are rising very sharply. The result: turnover increases, activity decreases, and the cost of new equipment increases. Manufacturers nevertheless report a high order book in 2023, providing some stability, but see the ZFE calendar deadline fast approaching, forcing them to further inflate equipment prices.

Body work is in trouble

In terms of registrations, OVI notes “convergence between the European and French markets. With one exception: the recovery of the Polish market”. Registrations of IVs of 5 tonnes and over were flat at 44,341 units over the year, but carriers fell sharply by 18,816 registrations (-12%). As for used vehicles, they experienced an increase of +1.1% or 45,487 registrations. Cumulative registrations of VIs of 3.5 t and over in Europe increased by +2.3% to 348,727 units in the 12 months to the end of October 2022. The body market does not exhibit the same stability. Registrations of +5t bucket carriers fell sharply +13.2% to 17,006 units (worst since 2015) and registrations are down -25% from 2019.

Resistance but suffering

Specific BTP carriers, which make up 40% of the segment, decreased by -12.6%. Trash cans, which accounted for 38% of the segment, experienced a -22.7% decline compared to 2021 with 17,182 registrations. They retreated and fell below 3,000 registrations for the first time in 7 years. Semi-trailers and trailers remained moderately stable over the 10-year period. “Carriers cannot recover after two years below historical levels, recalls Arnaud Villéger. To this observation we must add the lack of impact of the semiconductor shortage on semi-trailers. It is resisting quite well, but suffers from a supply problem. New rigids and body cars are falling sharply, the slurries the elongation is cumulative and almost doubles”, emphasizes Arnaud Villéger.

High level of control

Paradoxically, orders for new carriers are up +16.5% and price increases are up +16.4% this year. Customers are no longer able to negotiate the vehicle amount due to shortages and delivery times. Although delivery times remain very long, they decrease at the end of 2022: 308 days vs. 339 days at the end of 2021, and steady for bodybuilders, 152 days vs. 148 days at the end of 2021.

VO parks are empty

Second-hand carriers are stable compared to 2021. The VI market is tight with very long lead times for NV acquisition, very low UV stocks, and infrequent vehicle trades. The age of tractors in the park has been getting younger for several years: the share of vehicles aged 3 and under is increasing, this also applies to carriers. Resale periods are very short: 34 days for owners (40 days in 2021).

The deadline for the EPZ is getting dangerously close

The unfavorable economic environment unfortunately coincides with the upcoming implementation of the ZFEs, the deadline of which remains unchanged (December 31, 2024). “In 2024 there will be no Crit’R 2 cars allowed in Grand Paris, but 250,000 cars are still on the circuit,” notes Arnaud Villéger. Therefore, the framework can potentially be relaxed, especially with several metropolises that can do without an EPZ, provided that the annual concentration of nitrogen dioxide does not exceed 10 μg/m3. “Given the very tight schedule, the state is also working on the possible homogenization of ZFEs,” the OVI director continues. All this can only really work if the controls follow. Understand: rapid implementation of automatic vehicle identification systems.

From a mono-energy fleet to a multi-energy fleet

For manufacturers, the “magic wand” could be an upgrade that appears alongside the traditional offering of new and used cars. It is about replacing the heat engine with an alternative energy engine by reusing maximum elements.
original car. This solution has a number of advantages: access to ZFEs, limited immobilization during the working period, lower price than a new car, significantly extending the service life of the car… and some limitations: unchanged external dimensions, only heat-to-electric conversion, transport over 5 years old in vehicles, equivalent power… “We will move from single-energy fleets with potential complexity in human resource management to multi-energy fleets, OVI director warns Phenomenon allows to emerge. new players specializing in providing a complete offer including vehicle and fuel costs.


In 2023, the overall decline in the market is -6.8% for new carriers (17,503 registrations in the low range) and -7.1% for used VIs. Prices should continue to rise: +12.1% for new carriers. The increase in used cars should be limited to +3.8% for used cars. “What we forecast for 2023 is actually a declining or relatively stable market. The cumulative effect of price increases and delivery/build times in these two segments will be many pitfalls for registrations to recover. Carriers are suffering from increased order books, extended body production times, though they show. and operators are committed to cleaner and therefore newer fleets,” concludes Arnaud Villéger.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *