We all know that working vehicles play a massive part in keeping the country going, driving the economy, but new data shows just how big a role they have taken on.
New figures for 2021 show that commercial vehicles, buses and coaches accounted for their highest ever proportion of all vehicles on the road since SMMT records began.
Of all the 40,506,971 vehicles in use, more than one in eight are working vehicles, doing a job – this includes some 75,000 buses, more than 600,000 trucks and 4.8 million vans.
Even the beleaguered bus sector has seen growth in numbers for the first time in more than a decade, although there are still -10% fewer buses in service compared with pre-pandemic levels.
Buses lead the way in terms of electrification, but diesel is still predominant, with just 1.3% buzzing on batteries. Battery technology is even less common in vans, with just one in 180 running on electric, while electric HGVs, with their demanding operational cycles, make up one in every 2,000 – less than 0.1% of all trucks.
We need joined up thinking and support from government to accelerate the commercial vehicle sector on its journey towards electrification. Bus Back Better, a van plan, CV demonstrators – it’s moving in the right direction, but gradually.
Since working vehicles perform such an important function, it is only natural that they should also play an important part in SMMT’s International Automotive Summit in London on Tuesday 28 June.
We’re delighted that Laurence Drake, MD of DAF Trucks, will be joining us as one of our keynote speakers. So don’t delay, register today! Members get one free ticket, with additional tickets at £250, while for non-members they are £500.
See you there…