Britain’s van market is continuing to climb, up 11.8 per cent in April.

In the month that light commercial manufacturers focused on the UK with the holding of the Commercial Vehicle Show in Birmingham, 27,880 new vehicles were registered.

According to the Society of Motor Manufacturers & Traders (SMMT), which compiles the registration figures, the rise in the market is being driven by large vans and pick-ups, up 22.8 per cent and 35.4 per cent respectively.

April marks the third consecutive month of growth for the van sector, year-to-date registrations running 3.3 per cent ahead of the record performance in 2015.

According to the figures the 2.5 to 3.5-tonne van segment accounted for 60 per cent of all new vehicles registered with 17,660, as the smaller 2.0 to 2.5-tonne segment declined some 22.7 per cent – though this accounted for just 3,429 vans.

Fiat's Fullback will add to the choice in the rocketing pick-up market.
Fiat’s Fullback will add to the choice in the rocketing pick-up market.

SMMT chief executive Mike Hawes sees the rise in the van market as a positive move following a quieter start to 2016. “The 3.3 per cent rise in registrations during the first four months of the year places the sector in a strong position and on track to maintain stable growth throughout 2016,” he says.

Industry observers at the CV Show suggested that the strong van performance is being driven by a rise n online shopping and the need to deliver goods ordered in urban environments – for these vans are far more practical than trucks.

And the choice of vehicles for operators is set to grow further – manufacturers such as Iveco (pictured) and LDV unveiled new large vans at the show.

Ford continues to dominate the LCV market, with 8,219 registrations in April ahead of Volkswagen (4,194), Vauxhall (3,430), Citroën (2,134) and Peugeot (1,994).

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