Demand for new vans dropped in May as 26,982 LCVs were registered during the month, a fall of 5.3% compared with May 2016’s figures.
Registrations of vans weighing between 2.5-3.5t – the largest sector in terms of volume – were hit particularly badly, with a 10.1% dip in sales, to 17,007 units, while demand for those weighing between 2.0-2.5t fell by 2.1% to 3,514.
Vans weighing less than 2.0t also saw a marginal dip in performance, with a 0.8% decline to 2,503 units.
In contrast, the pick-up market continued to grow - up by 26.2% compared with May 2016, to 3,930 units.
Year-to-date registrations of all vans up to 3.5t were down by 5.0% compared with the first five months last year, but Mike Hawes, SMMT chief executive, remained positive.
“LCV registrations have experienced a period of stellar growth in recent years, so this decline was expected as the market stabilises,” he said. “To put this performance into context, overall demand remains strong with year-to-date registrations up 51.2% compared with the same period five years ago, and we expect demand to remain stable at similar levels throughout the year.”