The Guide to the Different Commercial Car Types For Leasing in Singapore

The Guide to the Different Commercial Car Type For Leasing in Singapore


According to the annual vehicle statistics by the Land Transport Authority (LTA), there have been a 7% increment to the number of commercial vehicles that are registered in Singapore over the span of 10 years. With rising prices of passenger vehicles in Singapore, some car owners are turning to commercial vehicles like vans. However, do you know that commercial vehicles are not allowed to be used for personal transportation unlike private vehicles?

Year Category Number
2007 Goods & Other Vehicles 150,979
2008 Goods & Other Vehicles 156,089
2009 Goods & Other Vehicles 158,207
2010 Goods & Other Vehicles 157,541
2011 Goods & Other Vehicles 159,768
2012 Goods & Other Vehicles 160,417
2013 Goods & Other Vehicles 160,344
2014 Goods & Other Vehicles 161,698
2015 Goods & Other Vehicles 162,182
2016 Goods & Other Vehicles 163,277
2017 Goods & Other Vehicles 162,712

Goods Vehicle Population as of 31 December 2017

Singapore Regulations

Traffic Police and Commercial Vehicle Singapore

Image: Straits Times

According to LTA, it is an offence to utilize commercial vehicles for personal usage. Owners are liable to a fine of up to $1,000 or imprisonment of up to three months upon first conviction. For second and subsequent convictions, offenders are liable to a fine of $2,000 or imprisonment of up to six months. Only registered companies or licensed hawkers can register a commercial vehicle which can only be used to carry goods and employees of the business. The measure aims to help business owners to manage their costs as light goods vehicles do enjoy significantly lower vehicle taxes as compared to passenger cars.

Traffic police will also be able to issue fines if the passenger(s) on-board is/are not an employee of the registered company that owns the vehicle. For insurance coverage, the injured passenger(s) may not be compensate by insurance in the event of an accident as it’s considered a breach of policy.

Classification of commercial vehicles in Singapore

In Singapore, commercial vehicles are also known as good vehicles. They have a lifespan of 20 years (excluding engineering plants) and need to be deregistered at the end the permitted period. They are classified in 4 different groups by the authority: Goods-cum-passenger vehicles (GPVs), Light Goods Vehicles (LGVs), Heavy Goods Vehicles (HGVs) and Very Heavy Goods Vehicles (VHGVs). Read on to find out how to identify and what the options available for leasing!

Goods-cum-passenger vehicles (GPVs)

GPVs are vehicles that are meant to transport both goods and passengers.  They can have a maximum laden weight (MLW) of up to 5,000kg/ 5 metric tonnes.  Depending on their maximum laden weight, they can be LGVs or HGVs. Vehicles like vans, buses or lorries could be considered as a GPV as long as it comes with proper seats, seat belts and matches the permitted MLW.

Vehicle options for leasing in Singapore varies for the GPV category like Utes/Pickup Trucks, Vans and Lorries. Some examples of existing models in the automotive market are Mitsubishi Triton, Nissan Navara, Toyota Liteace, Isuzu D-Max and more.

Goods-cum-passenger vehicles (GPVs)

Light Goods Vehicles (LGVs)

Commercial vehicles are categories or defined as light goods vehicles (LGVs) with a maximum laden weight (MLW) of up to 3,500kg/3.5 metric tonnes which are meant for carrying goods; or small buses with a maximum seating capacity of up to 15 passengers. Large and small goods vehicles in Singapore do not carry the S prefix in the vehicle registration number. For light goods vehicle, they start with the G or the GB prefix.

  • G_: The G prefix is used on light goods vehicles previously (class 3/4/5) (e.g. GA to GZ)
  • GB_: The GB prefix is use to identify all light goods vehicles in Singapore since 2010 (class 3/4/5)

Light Goods Vehicles (LGVs) car plate example

Image Credits: Wikimedia Commons

Apart from the number plate, LGVs could be easily identified via the vehicle display at both side of the vehicle with the following information:

  • Name of Registered Vehicle Owner
  • Business Registered Address
  • Business registration/licence number
  • Passenger capacity of the vehicle

Here are some examples of existing car models available for leasing in Singapore: Nissan NV200, NV350, Nissan Cabstar, Toyota Hiace Commuter/Van, Toyota Liteace, Toyota Dyna, Renault Kangoo, Volkswagen Caddy, Volkswagen Transporter and moref.

Light Goods Vehicles

Heavy Goods Vehicles (HGVs)

Commercial vehicles are categories/defined as heavy goods vehicles (HGV) if they have a laden weight of more than 3.5 metric tonnes (>3,500kg) to 16 metric tonnes (16,000kg). They can be identified via their vehicle registration/number plate which start with the Y prefix which is used on all heavy vehicles (Class 3 / 4 licence). Do note that G and Y plate vehicles are not allowed to enter Malaysia without a registered Malaysian business, insurance coverage and approved inspections by the Malaysian authorities.

The options for leasing in Singapore under the LGV and the HGV categories includes multipurpose vans, lorries and trucks. These vehicles can be customized according to different business needs.

  • Open Deck/Carriage
  • Dropside
  • Flatbed
  • Canopy
  • Refrigerated Truck
  • Box Truck
  • Panel Van
  • Micro Buses
  • Caravan
  • Tailgate


Image Credits: Isuzu

Some examples of existing car models available for leasing in Singapore are Isuzu ELF/ N Series, Mitsubishi Canter and more.

Very Heavy Goods Vehicles (VHGVs)

For vehicles that have a laden weight of more than 16 metric tonnes (16,000kg), it will be classified as very heavy goods vehicle (VHGV). They can be identified via their vehicle registration number plate which starts with the X prefix. Some examples of such vehicles are recovery vehicles like the tow trucks, cranes, tankers, mixers, tippers, prime movers, garbage or sanitary wagon and container trucks.

Commercial Vehicle Leasing in Singapore

For businesses who relies heavily on transportation, fleet management and operations issues are usually the most intricate problems faced. Despite the tax subsidies for commercial vehicle purchases, additional costs (road tax, insurance, maintenance and repair) and liabilities are incurred for vehicle ownership. Why spend your business capital on a depreciating asset?

The benefits of outsourcing your fleet and car leasing includes productivity enhancement, cost effectiveness and better allocation of resources.  Enjoy the flexibility of leasing to change or upgrade the commercial vehicles according to your growing business needs over the years. With leasing, your vehicles will be well taken care of with regular maintenance and servicing to reduce constant breakdown which may disrupt business operations. Apart from commercial vehicle leasing, there are other options available like commercial vehicle financing, hire purchase and sales & leaseback.

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