ADESA: Feb. Used Vehicle Prices Up 0.9% from Year Ago

Wholesale used vehicle prices were down in February versus January, atypical of their seasonal pattern, but prices were up modestly on a year-over-year basis, according to the latest Kontos Kommentary from ADESA Chief Economist Tom Kontos. Continued wholesale supply growth was coupled with weaker retail demand — limited by severe weather conditions.

This unusual pattern would indicate that dealers were fairly aggressive in proactively bidding in-lane and online for the vehicles needed for the budding spring market, especially highly certifiable off-rental program vehicles remarketed by auto manufacturers, says Kontos.

According to ADESA Analytical Services’ monthly analysis of Wholesale Used Vehicle Prices by Vehicle Model Class, wholesale used vehicle prices in February averaged $9,839 — down 1.4% compared to January but up 0.9% relative to February 2013. Compact cars and vans, which are popular rental and fleet vehicles, were the only segments that had both monthly and annual price gains.

As manufacturers capitalized on strong demand for certifiable units, prices for used vehicles remarketed by manufacturers were up 1.3% month-over-month and up 6.3% year-over-year. Prices for fleet/lease consignors were down 0.5% sequentially but up 1.1% annually. For dealer consignors, there was a 1.1% average price increase versus January but a 0.9% uptick versus February 2013.

Based on data from CNW Marketing/Research, retail used vehicle sales were down 15.6% month-over-month, as severe weather again negatively impacted auto shopping. On the other hand, sales of certified pre-owned (CPO) vehicles in February were up 7.7% from the prior month and up 14.1% from the prior year, according to figures from Autodata.

Wholesale Used Vehicle Price Trends          
  Average Prices ($/Unit)     Latest Month Versus:  
  Feb-14 Jan-14 Feb-13 Prior Month Prior Year
Total All Vehicles $9,839 $9,983 $9,747 -1.4% 0.9%
Total Cars $8,776 $8,869 $8,854 -1.1% -0.9%
Compact Car $7,130 $7,010 $6,910 1.7% 3.2%
Midsize Car $8,140 $8,258 $8,262 -1.4% -1.5%
Fullsize Car $6,889 $6,771 $7,413 1.7% -7.1%
Luxury Car $11,999 $12,209 $11,963 -1.7% 0.3%
Sporty Car $12,002 $12,343 $12,144 -2.8% -1.2%
Total Trucks $10,239 $10,438 $9,531 -1.9% 7.4%
Mini Van $7,609 $7,448 $6,910 2.2% 10.1%
Fullsize Van $10,907 $10,341 $9,952 5.5% 9.6%
Mini SUV $11,988 $11,987 $10,993 0.0% 9.1%
Midsize SUV $7,324 $7,503 $6,560 -2.4% 11.6%
Fullsize SUV $10,652 $10,981 $10,130 -3.0% 5.2%
Luxury SUV $18,210 $18,941 $18,583 -3.9% -2.0%
Compact Pickup $7,260 $7,362 $7,459 -1.4% -2.7%
Fullsize Pickup $12,460 $12,632 $11,532 -1.4% 8.0%
Total Crossovers $12,615 $12,768 $13,398 -1.2% -5.8%
Compact CUV $11,480 $11,553 $11,873 -0.6% -3.3%
Mid/Fullsize CUV $13,791 $13,999 $14,916 -1.5% -7.5%

This Kontos Kommentary analysis is based on nearly six million annual sales transactions from more than 150 of the largest U.S. wholesale auto auctions, including those of ADESA as well as other auction companies. ADESA Analytical Services segregates these transactions to study trends by vehicle model class.

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