China’s CV Truck Market Softening, Bus Markets Flat

ACT Research reports structural changes in China's commercial vehicle market will cause downward pressure through 2022.

While not impacting each commercial vehicle segment every year, structural changes within China’s CV market are expected to exert downward pressure through 2022, according to the most recent China Commercial Vehicle OUTLOOK, jointly published quarterly by ACT and China’s State Information Center (SIC). The OUTLOOK includes an overview of the China economy and a review and forecast of China’s heavy- and medium-duty truck and bus markets, as well as analysis of OEM market shares within China. 

“2018 was the start of a continuously down market through 2022, with many forces, including modal shifts and technology advances, acting to provide downward pressure,” says Robert Perkins, Senior Global Business Consultant at ACT Research. He continues, “That said, the downward pressure won’t apply to all subgroups every year. For example, dump truck demand was up substantially in 2018, due to the NSIII vehicle replacement requirements.” 

According to Perkins, “ACT Research anticipates that, in the next 5 years, policies regarding commercial vehicles in China will focus on environmental improvement and safety.” He cautions, “While this will promote product updates and technology shifts, they should not cause the large market fluctuations we experienced in 2016 and 2017.”

When asked about specific market segments, Perkins responds, “The domestic demand for heavy trucks declined about 1% year-over-year in Q4’18, while the tractor market grew more than 12% and the medium truck market closed 2018 down nearly 48% compared to Q4’17.”

SIC is affiliated with the National Development and Reform Commission of China and is engaged in research on the macro-economy, key industries and information technology.