In its recent 20th ‘State of the Nation’ press briefing, Iveco reviewed its record progress throughout 2005 and predicted that in 2006 the market was likely to see a downturn.
Michael Carley, marketing director for Iveco, said that evolution was the order of the day for the company. At the beginning of December, Iveco announced a new simpler and more strategic management structure. He said: “Change is an inescapable factor of business these days. It’s something that all of us can rely on, like day turning into night. The world evolves.”
Chris Thorneycroft-Smith, managing director of Iveco, announced that during 2005, the truck manufacturer had sold and registered more vehicles than at any other time in its thirty-year history. He outlined how the company has reorganized to respond to the way in which the market is evolving and to mirror the way in which operators are now doing business. As well as outlining the ways in which the company has restructured itself, Thorneycroft-Smith made some predictions for how the truck market might look in 2006.
“For the third year running and the fourth time in five years, 2005 saw the biggest van and truck market ever since records began. At 2.8 tonnes and above, it nudged all the way up to a massive 196,532 unit registrations in total.” He went on to say that 2006 was going to be a pivotal year for the market with the coming; DigiTachs, Euro4, SCR, EGR and Adblue. Although these things are affecting the industry already, he felt that they will become a firm reality in the coming year. He also predicted that after Iveco’s record success of 2005, the market was likely to see a downturn in 2006. He said that through 2005, “we did an incredible 9,406 new vans, 6,105 new trucks and 2,810 used vehicles, a total of 18,323”.
He said of 2006 that: “the economic runes are less promising, and the experts are saying that things will be harder. Against the pit prop of Contract hire, let me say that I certainly don’t see a fall out of the market, 1990’s style – and thank goodness for that.” He said that in reality the demand has been moderating for some time now. He predicted that there would be a boost with the incoming Euro 4 engine, but the level of the boost would depend on; how far operators are able to look ahead, on how well the industry is prepared and on what demand is really like in 2006.