Experts predict a market in 2015 in line with 2014, with reasonable growth both in terms of GDP (expected + 1.1 % and + 1.7 % from Eurostat for 2015 and 2016) and PC Market ( CECRA -European Council for Motor Trades and Repairs- forecasts growth of PC market + 1.03 % across the 12 countries of the study).
The first trends recorded in the first quarter 2015 are very encouraging.
France and Germany supported the personal vehicles sales as of the start of the crisis in 2009 by putting into place a scrappage scheme or incentives for clean, energy efficient vehicles. The suspension of these measures explains, in part, the declines we saw in these countries between 2010 and 2013. Over the period, sales went from a 100 index in 2004 to an index of 90 in 2013. 2014 seems to be the year of the turnaround with a growth of 1.9 %
Spain, Portugal and Italy are the 3 countries that have been hit the hardest by this economic crisis. Since 2007, personal vehicle sales haven’t stopped sliding every year going from an index of 109 in 2007 to 54 in 2013. These countries have a significant reversal in 2014 with growth of 10.6 % of PC sales.
On the opposite spectrum, Switzerland has always seen their personal vehicles sales volume grow from 2009 to 2013 but recorded a significant decline in 2013 and 2014.
The UK, CZ and Poland group records a significant increase in volume of PC sales over the last 3 years. Over the period, sales went from a 79 index in 2011 to an index of 99 in 2014.
Benelux: Sales down in 2009 at the time of the crisis, in 2011 the losses were largely met, overall decline in sales in the next period ( 2011-2014 / only Luxembourg recorded growth over the last period , but the small size of its market does not influence the group of countries).
The light commercial vehicle market, less subject to government grants, is much more strongly correlated with the GDP growth rate.
Spain, Portugal and Italy saw their volumes divided by 2,6 between 2007 and 2012. It would appear that the low point was hit in 2013, as the market showed a significant growth in 2014 (+26%). Despite this, it still remains very far from pre-crisis levels with 259,000 units in 2014 versus 561,000 in 2007 ( down 54 %).
The other countries record a strong correlation between sales evolutions and GDP growth. Sharp decline of LCV sales in 2009 following the decline of the GDP growth rate, then rise through 2011. Very slight growth of the market over the 2012-2014 period.
In Europe, large and very large companies are the most optimistic concerning their fleet growth potential and very large companies tend to be more optimistic year after year since 2012. This optimism in large and very large companies is strongly linked with the global economic situation of the countries.
An increase of vehicle detention period is perceived by fleet managers in almost every countries, especially in large and very large companies.
At a global European level, main financing method remains stable over years with a predominance of self purchase in small and medium companies and a predominance of leasing (operating and financial) in large and very large companies.
Mobility is a subject mainly handled in large and very large companies across Europe :
More than a third of large and very large companies have a dedicated organisation in charge of travel and mobility.
Services like ‘internal audit of mobility’ and ‘car pooling’ are mostly implemented or considered in large and very large companies.
As mobility, Telematics is a subject most frequently handled by large and very large companies :
Less than one small or medium company out of ten has implemented Telematics in Europe. When implemented it is mainly for vehicle location purpose.
In large and very large companies, Telematics are implemented in one company out of five. If those companies use Telematics as vehicles locator like small and medium companies, they also use it frequently to reduce fuel consumption.
We notice pretty good feedbacks concerning mobile apps made to support fleet management (Services locator, company car policy app, services booking, drivers behaviour report, remote access to car data and consolidated dashboard app), even if the results are very heterogeneous depending on the country. The interest for those apps increases with the company’s size but is quite similar for all the apps tested in the questionnaire.
For new energies as for other innovative subjects, large and very large companies are ahead of their time. Hybrid and Electric vehicles are the two most implemented or considered new energies in Europe.