Used commercial vehicle transactions of gross vehicle weight 3-8 vehicles were just over 176,000 units during the last quarter of the 2015 calendar year, up 14.3 percent from the same time period in 2014. Additionally, used commercial vehicle transactions accounted for 50.7 percent of total vehicle transactions in the quarter, according to a new report from IHS Automotive, part of IHS, Inc. and a leading source of critical information and insight to the global automotive and commercial vehicle industries.
Strong used truck transactions during the quarter pushed used transactions for the full calendar year to 755,109 units, the second best calendar year total since IHS started keeping records of used transactions in 2005. Used transactions in the 2015 calendar year were 6.2 percent better than 2014 and represented 51.4 percent of commercial vehicle transactions. Used transactions in 2015 were only 4.6 percent (46,179 units) below the record level reported during the 2011 calendar year, according to IHS analysis.
“One of the anomalies in the commercial vehicle market is that large fleets register the majority, with 74.1 percent of new registrations; while 78.4 percent of the vehicles in operation on the highway are operated by fleets of less than 500 units,” said Gary Meteer, director, commercial vehicle solutions for IHS Automotive. “The main issue is the availability of clean commercial vehicles, those with reasonable mileage, correct equipment and available at a fair price, in the used market.”
“Using GVW 8 vehicles as an example, during the 2008-2010 timeframe, there were 365,000 new GVW 8 vehicles registered. Today, there are only 313,000 of these vehicles still operating. Since these are the prime model years for vehicles to be replaced by large fleets, there is not an abundant supply of vehicles filtering into the used market,” Meteer said.
With the continued high level of new registrations to fleets operating more than 500 units, the trade backs provided by these large fleets provide a ready source of used commercial vehicles that are highly desirable to small and mid-size fleets. However, the main challenge continues to be the location and configuration of the used trucks that are made available for small to mid-size businesses that need these units to either replace older equipment or add equipment to their fleet.
When used commercial vehicle transactions are combined with new registrations, 2015 represented a record level of commercial vehicle activity. In the calendar year, 1.47 million commercial vehicle transactions occurred, exceeding the previous record of 1.37 million unit transactions in 2014 by 7.1 percent.
As with new commercial vehicle registrations, GVW 3 and GVW 8 vehicles have the highest level of used transactions, at 244,000 units and 272,000 units respectively in 2015, according to IHS analysis. Used transactions of GVW 3 vehicles were at a record level in the 2015 calendar year and used transactions of GVW 8 vehicles were at one of the top three calendar year levels.