The failure of the European pickup market to grow in numbers predicted just four years ago has caused once-bullish automakers to exit the segment, leaving Ford and Toyota as the only brands with decent sales.
The optimism shown in 2017 -- when both Renault and Mercedes-Benz launched pickups pitched at the lifestyle end of the commercial market -- failed to translate to growth in the segment.
Last year pickups accounted for just 6.8 percent of the LCV segment on sales of 116,280, down from 7.9 percent in 2017, according to data from JATO Dynamics. Sales were forecast to top 200,000 in 2018 up from 156,121 in 2017, but only rose to 165,785. They slipped to 159,280 in 2019.
Pickups seemed poised to break out in Europe after growing strongly starting in 2015, but demand failed to match previous heights, such as 2005 when sales hit 173,493 (see chart below).