Preliminary used Class 8 volumes contracted in March but remain positive year-over-year, year-to-date

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used semi trucks on lot
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COLUMBUS, Ind. — Preliminary used Class 8 volumes (same dealer sales) contracted 8% month-over-month in 2020’s third month, according to the latest preliminary release of the State of the Industry: U.S. Classes 3-8 Used Trucks published by ACT Research.

Looking at the longer term however, volumes rose 5% compared to March 2019 and grew 15% against the first three months of 2019.

Other data released in ACT’s preliminary report included month-over-month comparisons for March 2020, which showed that average prices were down 1%, while average miles and age both increased, up 2% and 1%, respectively.

ACT’s Classes 3-8 Used Truck Report provides data on the trucks’ 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.

“In normal times, sales increase around 15% from February to March, but these are not normal times, and the disconnect is likely the result of COVID-19, said Steve Tam, vice president of ACT Research.

“Freight was relatively strong for a good portion of March, as retailers and grocers scrambled to restock empty shelves. With that work largely complete, freight is falling and used truck sales and prices are expected to do the same,” Tam said, “The economy is expected to descend into recession, if it has not already done so, and with uncertainty about virtually everything high, the well prepared will plan for the worst while hoping for the best.”

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