UPDATE 1-European Feb truck sales fall 3.1 pct-ACEA

* Heavy trucks fall continues, down 32 pct yr/yr in Feb

* Light vehicles up 1.8, first rise since April 2008

* Market stabilisation continues, but little sign of upswing

(Adds detail, background)

STOCKHOLM, March 26 (BestGrowthStock) – European commercial vehicle
sales fell 3.1 percent in February, industry association ACEA
said on Friday, as the hard hit truck market stabilised but
showed little evidence of an upswing.

Truckmakers such as Germany’s Daimler (DAIGn.DE: ) and MAN SE
(MANG.DE: ), Sweden’s Volvo (VOLVb.ST: ) and Scania (SCVb.ST: ) and
Fiat’s (FIA.MI: ) Iveco were hit by the steepest market decline in
decades after the global financial crisis struck in late 2008.

Demand has stabilised in recent months, but lingering tight
credit to fund purchases of new vehicles and reduced demand for
transporting goods has meant there is little sign of a return to
the booming truck sales seen ahead of the crisis.

ACEA said in a statement new heavy-duty truck registrations
fell 32 percent year-on-year in Europe, which includes the
European Union member states plus the EFTA nations but excludes
Cyprus and Malta, while new light vehicles rose 1.8 percent.

“While heavy duty registrations continued to decline, light
commercial vehicle registrations increased for the first
time since April 2008,” the association said.

The truck industry has had to do without the incentive
schemes that have encouraged car drivers to trade in their old
models for new, greener cars, propping up major carmakers and
helping the European passenger car market limit last year’s fall
in unit sales to only 1.6 percent. [ID:nFAB015385]

Truckmakers have been wary about prospects for 2010 with the
likes of market leader Daimler saying it expects commercial
vehicle markets in developed countries to rebound only slowly
while major growth comes in emerging markets. [ID:nFAB015484]

Global No.2 truck maker Volvo, which like Daimler and MAN
skidded into the red last year as sweeping cost cuts failed to
offset the weak demand, has forecast market growth of about 10
percent in Europe this year over a dismal 2009. [ID:nLDE614063]

Still, lower inventories across the industry and firmer
demand mainly in Asia and Latin America has left Volvo and its
smaller Swedish rival Scania confident enough to begin slowly
cranking up production and staffing levels. [ID:nLDE62F0O2]

Stock Today

(Reporting by Niklas Pollard; Editing by Phil Berlowitz and
David Holmes)

UPDATE 1-European Feb truck sales fall 3.1 pct-ACEA