The Key Truck Manufacturers for the UK

DAF has been the runaway market leader in the UK for new truck sales over 6 tonnes GVW for over 30 years.  With a market share of over 30% since 2019, it means that there are always plenty of DAF trucks available on the used truck market.  A used truck buyer may well want to seriously consider a DAF truck, as there will be plenty of parts available and a strong dealer network for supply of parts and service.

It’s not all market domination by the PACCAR-owned business who assemble all their trucks for the UK market right here in the UK. The company leads the heavy segment overall, but there are niches where other manufacturers reign.

DAF XF 2020 Mode
The New Generation DAF XF Truck 2020 Model Year

Worldwide Truck Leaders

Whilst DAF (PACCAR group) get it all their own way in the UK, across the world there is a different story.  The owner of Mercedes-Benz trucks, Daimler Group are the world leaders by a considerable margin.  There are other manufacturers selling in selected markets only – Tata in India, Donfeng in China, Navistar in the US Hino, (Toyota Group – Japan). As far as we are interested, however, the Volvo Group (Volvo and Renault Trucks & Mack) come in second place and the Traton Group in third (owned by VW and consisting of Scania and MAN) with PACCAR competing for fourth place with CNH Industrial-owned Iveco.

Mercedes Wentworth Park
The Wentworth Park complex is home to Mercedes-Benz Trucks UK’s vehicle remarketing operation

Aspirational Truck Brands

Ask a driver of a top weigh tractor unit which truck they would rather be in for weeks on end and the answer would not usually be a DAF.  Scania and Volvo may well top that list.

Not only is Scania a brand that the truck drivers want to be seen in, they hold second place in the UK new truck market.  This is important as Scania only makes heavy duty trucks and does not compete lower down the weight range to 6 tonnes as DAF does.

Used Scania Truck
Typical Used Scania Truck for Sale – Here a 2021 Scania S Series 730S V8 6×2 tractor unit

Fellow Scandinavian manufacturer, Volvo, also has no smaller truck offering and sits in third place in the UK truck market.

Full Range Manufacturers

Mercedes certainly offers a complete range of trucks across all the weight groups.  Part of the Daimler group, the company is the largest truck maker in the world.  The Mercedes range starts with a small City van – the Citan and extends through medium (Vito) and large vans (Sprinter) through lightweight trucks (Atego), construction trucks, (Arocs), heavy trucks (Actros), go-anywhere trucks (Unimogs).  Many large fleets like the comfort buying from one manufacturer can bring.

Amongst the other manufacturers, the only company with a similar offering is MAN who offer panel vans (from the VW stable) right up to heavy haulage. Their range also includes military variants as used by the UK’s armed forces.

Used MAN KAT 1 Army Truck
Typical Used MAN KAT 1 A1 8×8 Ex-Army Truck

As used truck buyers are typically smaller businesses, this may not be such an issue.  Mercedes do make some great trucks, with lots of safety features built in.

Electric Truck Specialists

It is early days in the electric truck market, but an early leader in terms of European market share has emerged in Volvo Trucks. The company has sold more examples of electric trucks than any other European manufacturer. Will this early lead turn into a more permanent advantage?