February saw 6% drop in sales of used Class 8 trucks, increase in average miles, price age

A shortage of used Class 8 trucks is driving an increase in prices, as well as mileage and age, according to analysts at ACT Research.

COLUMBUS, Ind. — Preliminary figures show same-dealer sales of used Class 8 trucks fell 6% month over month and 8% year over year in February, but are 5% higher on a year-to-date basis compared to this time last year, according to the latest release of the State of the Industry: U.S. Classes 3-8 Used Trucks published by ACT Research.

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“Somewhat belying history, February used truck sales volumes took a step down from January, which is typically the weakest sales month of the year. What is different this time is that the inventory of used trucks is in short supply,” said Steve Tam, vice president of ACT. “Owing partially to strong used truck sales in the second half of 2020 and to supply chain-constrained, lower-than-expected new truck build and sales, dealers are having a hard time sating used truck buyers’ appetites.”

Other data released in the preliminary report includes month-over-month comparisons for February 2021, which shows the average price for used Class 8 trucks rose 1%. Average miles were up 5% and average age was 3% higher compared to January. Compared to February of 2020, average price was 17% higher, while average miles and age rose 2% each.

“Demand continues to be stoked by a robust freight market that is yielding some of the highest spot freight rates on record,” Tam said. “While we believe used truck prices will continue to increase, the gains do come with an expiration date, as the supply-demand balance between trucks and freight will equalize and used truck price comparisons will get increasingly tougher.”

ACT’s Classes 3-8 Used Truck Report provides data about 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).

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