Commercial vehicles worldwide - Statistics & Facts

In 2021, worldwide commercial vehicle production grew to around 23.2 million units, slowly recovering from the three million unit drop recorded in 2020. Commercial vehicles are comprised of all motor vehicles intended for the commercial transport of goods and passengers, with light commercial vehicles often referring to vehicles under 3.5 tons. With around 10.9 million vehicles produced, North America was the leading region in the production of commercial vehicles in 2021. Estimates place Asia and Oceania as the top manufacturer of heavy trucks in that year, with around 3.3 million units produced.

European manufacturers lead the way

Valued at an estimated 239.4 billion U.S. dollars in 2021, the long-distance trucking market in the United States had surpassed even its pre-pandemic market size and was projected to reach over 250 billion U.S. dollars by 2022. The U.S. is one of the leading countries in the commercial vehicles market due to its heavy reliance on road freight transport. In 2021, commercial vehicle sales recorded in the United States were over twice the sales recorded in China, and three of the world’s six largest trucking companies were U.S.-based. However, European companies beat out U.S.-American manufacturers in terms of global sales. In the 2021 fiscal year, the German Daimler Truck dominated the market, recording some 45.2 billion U.S. dollars in revenue for the sale of its heavy trucks and buses. Paccar, headquartered in Washington State, reported net sales less than half this value, at around 21.7 billion U.S. dollars. As of December 2021, Daimler Truck was not only the global commercial vehicle leader, but its Freightliner brand held some 37.7 percent of the U.S. Class 8 truck market, above Paccar’s Peterbilt and Kenworth brands which together represented under 30 percent of the market.

A long road ahead for electric commercial vehicles

With increasing national concerns over the carbon dioxide emissions of the global transportation sector, finding alternative fuel solutions is becoming a more significant concern for the commercial fleet sector. In 2020, medium and heavy trucks made up 22 percent of the world’s CO2 emissions. Projections for the new energy truck segment are optimistic—the global electric truck market was forecast to reach around 324,120 vehicles by 2026. However, heavy-duty electric trucks present a challenge to this alternative. These were expected to represent under seven percent of the total electric truck market in 2026. This lack of popularity is partly due to the prohibitive pricing of heavy-duty electric trucks: In 2020, electric heavy commercial trucks cost over three times more than diesel trucks. The heavy-duty electric vehicle charging infrastructure market is also projected to grow in the next few years. However, it faces specific challenges regarding charging time and battery capacity, as heavy-duty vehicles are most often used for long-haul journeys. Charging time, access to charging stations during long-haul trips, and high prices are hurdles the global heavy commercial vehicle market will have to tackle to become more electric.

Interesting statistics

In the following 4 chapters, you will quickly find the 28 most important statistics relating to "Commercial vehicles worldwide".


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