February 2004 bus & coach registrations continue falling

08 March 2004 #SMMT News

February, like January, saw bus and coach registrations fall year on year.

The details behind the headline results for 2004 are in the following table.

The figures support industry views of decline for buses and stability or modest growth for coach registrations in the year ahead.

For all buses and coaches the rolling year to February at 13,183 vehicles was down by 278 units on the 2003 year end total.

The separate figures for buses and coaches were 12,106 and 1,077. These were respectively a fall of 2.6 per cent and rise of 4.6 per cent on the 2003 year-end.

The year to February saw bus registrations over 8.5 tonnes fall 32.5 per cent on the same period last year.

Coach registrations were down in February, but up by over 56 per cent for the year to date. Despite the unpromising start to the year, March may hold a few surprises as it often does for cars, vans and trucks.

In contrast to the current very confident, possibly overconfident, general economic outlook, the mood in the bus and coach market is reserved, gloomy and possibly over pessimistic.

This belies the quite modest trend decline that has set-in to date as the monthly markets show characteristic large year on year swings.

With long intervals between sale and registration, this is inevitable, but over time the data in this new report for the press should clarify the underlying trends in the market.


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