Used Vehicle Prices Fall From Year Ago

For the first time since August 2014, average wholesale used vehicle prices fell on a year-over-year basis. Previously elevated sales of higher-priced, late-model off-rental program units have subsided and comparisons to prior year are now on more of an apples-to-apples basis in terms of seller-type composition, according to the latest Kontos Kommentary from ADESA Chief Economist Tom Kontos.

Although retail used vehicle demand has been strong, average new car incentives have been climbing, which puts further downward pressure on used vehicle prices, says ADESA. These impacts are most evident in car prices, as truck prices have held up well in the current low fuel price environment.

According to ADESA Analytical Services’ monthly analysis of Wholesale Used Vehicle Prices by Vehicle Model Class, wholesale used vehicle prices in August averaged $9,575 — down 3.1% compared to July and down 0.2% relative to August 2014.

Car prices continue to bear the brunt of price declines, falling 5.8% month over-month and 5.2% year-over-year, according to ADESA. On the other hand, truck prices fell only modestly (0.6%) on a sequential basis and actually went up significantly (9.8%) on a year-over-year basis.

Average wholesale prices for used vehicles remarketed by manufacturers were up 1.7% month-over-month but down 9.1% year-over-year. Prices for fleet/lease consignors were up a modest 0.7% sequentially but down 2.0% annually, according to ADESA. And dealer consignors saw a 3.6% price decrease versus July, but a 2.1% increase relative to August 2014.

Wholesale Used Vehicle Price Trends          
  Average Prices ($/Unit)     Latest Month Versus:  
  Aug-15 Jul-15 Aug-14 Prior Month Prior Year
Total All Vehicles $9,575 $9,876 $9,595 -3.1% -0.2%
Compact Car $6,514 $7,105 $6,748 -8.3% -3.5%
Midsize Car $7,272 $7,628 $7,832 -4.7% -7.1%
Fullsize Car $6,238 $7,297 $5,786 -14.5% 7.8%
Luxury Car $11,425 $11,720 $11,857 -2.5% -3.6%
Sporty Car $11,750 $12,512 $12,325 -6.1% -4.7%
Total Trucks $11,276 $11,346 $10,270 -0.6% 9.8%
Mini Van $6,624 $6,839 $6,126 -3.1% 8.1%
Fullsize Van $12,813 $12,420 $11,499 3.2% 11.4%
Mini SUV $13,642 $13,560 $12,407 0.6% 10.0%
Midsize SUV $7,826 $7,968 $7,401 -1.8% 5.7%
Fullsize SUV $11,161 $11,090 $10,400 0.6% 7.3%
Luxury SUV $18,136 $17,769 $18,588 2.1% -2.4%
Compact Pickup $7,686 $7,938 $7,333 -3.2% 4.8%
Fullsize Pickup $14,593 $14,731 $12,857 -0.9% 13.5%
Total Crossovers $11,339 $11,569 $11,950 -2.0% -5.1%
Compact CUV $10,106 $10,428 $10,666 -3.1% -5.3%
Mid/Fullsize CUV $12,278 $12,447 $13,198 -1.4% -7.0%

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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