LPG car sales up in the US
According to data gathered and presented by PERC (Propane Education & Research Council), sales of autogas-powered cars, trucks and buses rose by 8% between 2015 and 2016. Translated to nominal numbers, this means 14 thousand new vehicles were sold, including both OEM dedicated ones and aftermarket conversions. So many vehicles running on LPG haven't been purchased in the US since 2012.
While the 8% figure is good news in its own right, it may fail to impress, just like the 14000 one, which isn't exactly great for a market so big. However, there's a silver lining – over the past four years the number of LPG-powered vehicles on American roads soared by a much more respectable 35%. And don't forget that the US autogas market comprises almost exclusively commercial vehicles, including in no small part school buses, so the 2016 sales figure suddenly becomes quite something. Overall, there are 200 thousand LPG vehicles in the United States.
We are thrilled to see so many new fleets take advantage of all autogas has to offer. We do not expect autogas sales to slow down in the future, especially as more fleet owners and managers experience the lower cost of ownership of the fuel compared to other options out there.
Michael Taylor, director of Autogas business development for PERC
As far as specifics regarding 2016 sales are concerned, 2/3 of the new vehicles entering the market were aftermarket conversions. That is, they were purchased new and immediately converted by qualified installers, but not those affiliated to the vehicles' manufacturers or dealers. The remaining 1/3 were OEM dedicated vehicles, converted officially by their manufacturers or dealers, under manufacturer's permission and authorisation. Also, 62% of the autogas vehicles sold in 2016 were light-duty ones (pick-up trucks and vans), while medium- and heavy-duty ones combined constituted the remaining 38%. As for future forecasts, PERC expects nearly 80 thousand more trucks, vans and buses fueled with LPG to hit the roads by the year 2020. Let's hope more!
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