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Six Largest Bus Manufacturers Hold 40 Percent of the World Market

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Six Largest Bus Manufacturers Hold 40 Percent of the World Market

Jun 28 , 2022

The six largest producers of buses in unit terms -- Zhengzhou Yutong Bus (China), Daimler (Germany), Xiamen King Long Motor (China), Volkswagen (Germany), Marcopolo (Brazil), and Toyota (Japan) -- combined to account for two-fifths of all sales worldwide in 2013.

Global demand for buses is projected to advance more than five percent per annum to 664,000 units in 2018, twice as fast as the 2008-2013 rate of increase. The number of buses in use worldwide is expected to exceed eight million units in that year.

Demand for all major product types -- motor coaches, transit buses, and other buses -- will expand at a faster pace than during the 2008-2013 period. As the use of motor coaches by private transportation companies and firms involved in tourism increases steadily, this product segment will register above average growth. As personal incomes rise, passengers will increasingly expect the greater comfort, safety, and onboard services (e.g., television screens, outlets) that motor coaches offer, giving them a distinct advantage over other bus types. Increased government investment in bus transportation networks is forecast to drive advances in transit bus sales. Many older buses currently being used for public transportation will be replaced as there is considerable pent up demand in multiple markets after a period of limited government spending. Also, conventional transit buses will be gradually replaced with alternative fuel models.

The Asia/Pacific region is projected to account for more than three-fifths of all new global bus demand through 2018. China alone will be responsible for nearly half of the global total. Growth is expected to pick up in both China and India, the region’s two largest bus markets, after declining moderately during the second part of the 2008-2013 period. Japan, Taiwan, and South Korea are also expected to perform considerably better between 2013 and 2018 as older buses are replaced, often with alternative fuel models, while Indonesia, Thailand, Vietnam, and other developing nations will continue to see impressive bus sales growth. Suppliers to the Asia/Pacific market will benefit greatly from additional government investment in bus transportation networks and expansion of the tourism and private transportation industries. Also, Type C and other purpose-built school bus demand will rise, especially in China.

After a period of sizable losses, demand for buses in North America and Western Europe is projected to rebound noticeably, as sales of electric, hybrid, CNG, and LNG buses grow. Since 2003, demand for these models has increased dramatically in these regions (from relatively small existing market bases) because of the adoption of more stringent emissions standards (e.g., Euro VI for buses in December 2013). This trend is expected to continue as many cities, private transportation companies, and other end users become more sensitive to environmental issues. Also, suppliers to the North American market will benefit from a rebound in Type C school bus sales, while Western Europe will register gains in private and public transit bus and motor coach demand, says the Freedonia report.

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