Commercial vehicles in the Netherlands - statistics & facts
Over 1,700 new transport and logistics companies were created in the Netherlands in the second quarter of 2020 despite the economic repercussions of the Covid-19 pandemic. This rise in new businesses offsets the dissolutions of that same quarter, which were fewer than 700. These figures showcase a positive evolution for the transportation industry in the Netherlands at the beginning of 2020, after the sector had shrunk in the latter quarters of 2019. As a part of this industry, truck dealerships were estimated to generate some 6.2 billion euros in revenue in 2019. The transportation and logistics industries are projected to grow in 2021, with forecasts predicting the goods road transport sector will rise by a steady 1.3 percent, while post and couriers are expected to increase by two percent.
The slow rise of alternative fuel commercial vehicles
With a motorization rate of 70 commercial vehicles per 1,000 inhabitants, the Netherlands was well within the European Union average in 2019. The Dutch commercial vehicle fleet comprises light commercial vehicles (under 3.5 metric tons), heavy commercial vehicles (over 3.5 metric tons), and buses. Tractors were leading the sales of heavy commercial vehicles with figures over seven times bigger than box vans. Heavy trucks tended to be older than light commercial vehicles, with the majority of trucks being between nine and 12 years old compared to the majority of light vans being between three and four years of age. Out of 170,640 commercial vehicles registered at the start of 2020, almost 20 percent of the fleet were powered by alternative fuel. This number notched up to 38,070 vehicles at the end of 2020, with alternative fuel light commercial vehicles experiencing the steepest increase due to the push for more delivery vehicles and more sustainable units strengthened by Covid-19. All these factors contributed to the diversity of the Dutch commercial vehicle fleet.
European brands are leading the market
Dutch brand DAF was the leading brand for new heavy commercial vehicles in the Netherlands in 2019, outperforming second-in-the-ranking Scania. The Swedish manufacturer was followed closely in sales by Swedish peer competitor Volvo and Germany's Mercedes-Benz. The clear popularity of European brands on the Dutch market is also observable when looking at light commercial vehicle sales by brand, albeit to a lesser extent. Volkswagen and Mercedes-Benz, both German brands, led the sales in volume. They were followed by U.S.-based Ford. Mercedes-Benz also held the highest market share for electric light commercial vehicle sales, with the eVito Van being the most sought-after model in 2020. Part of this popularity can be explained by intra-European Union preferential trade.
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Research Expert covering transportation and logistics