New bus and coach registrations in the UK declined in the first quarter of 2017, according to Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT). Demand fell -4.2% in the first three months of the year, with 1,877 new buses and coaches registered. Despite the overall decline, double deckers continued to enjoy the strong growth seen in 2016 with an uplift of 42.4% in the quarter to 487 units. This contrasted with decreases of -16.7% and -9.7% for minibuses and single deckers respectively.
SMMT Chief Executive, Mike Hawes, said, ‘The uplift in double deck demand is significant as they are used in our towns and cities so fleet renewal here will help improve air quality in urban areas. Following the strong market performance of 2016, some levelling off in the market overall was to be expected this year, as many operators have now invested heavily in their fleets.’
Registrations by marque, with 2016’s equivalent figures in brackets, were: ADL 467 (621), Ford 300 (160), Volvo 290 (226), Peugeot 139 (95), Mercedes-Benz 234 (272), Wrightbus 96 (122), Iveco 16 (25), Optare 36 (44) and others 299 (404).