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Company 4x4 sales up

Date: 12 December 2006

Range Rover Sport TDV8

Despite retail sales of 4x4 vehicles falling both in November and for the year-to-date, demand is still strong in the business car market.

While January to November total fleet sales are down 1% at 1,083,447, and November alone saw a 2.4% drop to 82,642, the market for off-roaders was up 1% for November and stands up more than 9% for the year-to-date.

Growth in this market has also come from the top end with luxury vehicles such as the Range Rover Sport, Jeep Grand Cherokee and Volvo XC90 accounting for almost all this growth.

Experts within car makers believe those eco-campaigners claiming the bottom has fallen out of the 4x4 market have not taken into account that two of the biggest selling 4x4s are about to be replaced and have artificially depressed the market.

The experts also claim the small 4x4 market will improve dramatically at the start of next year when the new Land Rover Freelander and new Honda CR-V, which went on sale this month, become available in higher numbers.