According to the latest release of the State of the Industry: U.S. Classes 3-8 Used Trucks, published by ACT Research, used Class 8 volumes (same dealer sales) were 4% lower month-over-month. Longer term, volumes were down 22% y/y, but up 7% ytd.
Average prices were 6% higher compared to July, 48% more expensive than in August of 2020, and 33% greater ytd. Average miles were 1% fewer m/m, but 1% more y/y. Average age was up 4% from July and 9% older compared to August of 2020.
The report from ACT provides data on the average selling price, miles, and age based on a sample of industry data. In addition, the report provides the average selling price for top-selling Class 8 models for each of the major truck OEMs – Freightliner (Daimler); Kenworth and Peterbilt (Paccar); International (Navistar); and Volvo and Mack (Volvo). This report is utilized by those throughout the industry, including commercial vehicle dealers, to gain a better understanding of the used truck market, especially as it relates to changes in near-term performance.
“Used Class 8 same dealer sales volumes saw their fifth consecutive month of sequential declines in August. Typically, sales in August usually mark the beginning of the return to improving business following the summer doldrums,” said Steve Tam, Vice President at ACT Research. He continued, “The departure from normal serves to highlight the macro view of the challenges facing the larger industry, namely a lack of used truck inventory brought on by the curtailed manufacture of new trucks.”
Looking at the different sales channels for used Class 8 vehicles, Tam commented, “Channel results were mixed, with the wholesale and retail segments showing a small increase in the near term. All three outlets saw lower volumes compared to August 2020. Through the first eight months of the year, only the retail segment has improved.”
He added, “Aside from bemoaning the lack of inventory, the most popular topic of conversation in the industry centers on understanding pricing dynamics, especially when the market will begin to cool. The answer to the question is one that depends, in part, on one’s perspective.” Tam concluded, “On a sequential basis, our expectation is that growth should continue through the end of Q1’22. Looking back to 2020, pricing will start seeing increasingly tougher comparisons with October sales. With the additional buffer, year-over-year growth will likely continue through Q2’22. Key to these expectations is the balance between fleet size and freight to be hauled and work to be done.”
ACT Research is recognized as the leading publisher of commercial vehicle truck, trailer, and bus industry data, market analysis and forecasts for the North America and China markets. ACT’s analytical services are used by all major North American truck and trailer manufacturers and their suppliers, as well as banking and investment companies. ACT Research is a contributor to the Blue Chip Economic Indicators and a member of the Wall Street Journal Economic Forecast Panel. ACT Research executives have received peer recognition, including election to the Board of Directors of the National Association for Business Economics, appointment as Consulting Economist to the National Private Truck Council, and the Lawrence R. Klein Award for Blue Chip Economic Indicators’ Most Accurate Economic Forecast over a four-year period. ACT Research senior staff members have earned accolades including Chicago Federal Reserve Automotive Outlook Symposium Best Overall Forecast, Wall Street Journal Top Economic Outlook, and USA Today Top 10 Economic Forecasters. More information can be found at www.actresearch.net.
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