The UK new van market achieved a steady performance in February, with registrations at the same level as this time last year, when the sector recorded a seven-year high.

A tally of 13,891 new light commercial vehicles (LCVs) were registered in February – traditionally one of the quietest months of the year compared with 13,832 a year ago.

Year to date sales were off 2.5% to 34,993, however.

February registrations of new vans below 2.0 tonnes and between 2.0-2.5 tonnes fell by 10.5% and 23.9% respectively in the month, but this was offset by an uplift of 6.2% in the 2.5-3.5T segment as demand for heavier vehicles continued to grow.

SMMT chief executive Mike Hawes said: “After a record-breaking year for new van registrations in 2015, it was inevitable that such rapid growth would level off. The market’s performance so far this year is in line with expectations, and although further stabilisation is expected over the coming months, this is a sector in good health – with February’s figures still at high levels.”