Used Car Prices Suffer Record One-Week Slide

Sellers sticking to prices, resulting no-sales cut prices.

by on Jan.03, 2018

Prices for used cars, in particular midsize vehicles, dropped by a record numbers last week.

Looking for a car? Used may be the way to go, if pricing is the primary consideration.

The latest Black Book Market report shows that used car prices are falling, especially – and this is likely not a surprise – midsize sedan prices. Overall, used car prices fell 0.78%, which is the steepest one-week decline in history.

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As mentioned, midsized cars saw the highest depreciation with a 1.18% decrease in value, according to the publication. Small pickups in the truck segment performed the best out of all vehicle categories, maintaining their value from last week, while the overall truck segment fell 0.54%.

“The last full week of 2017 saw the steepest decline of the year in the overall car segment,” said Anil Goyal, senior vice president of Automotive Valuation and Analytics.

(Toyota poised to slip to third in global sales for 2017. Click Herefor the story.)

Collector cars are expected to perform well during the upcoming auction season.

The group noted that valuations were down, in part, because sellers were unwilling to let go of vehicles for less than their expected price. Although this isn’t unusual for this time of year, there were and unusually high number of “no-sales” on the auction blocks during the week, BBM noted.

However, high-quality clean lower priced vehicles performed well during the week, adding to the record declines in valuations. Midsize cars weren’t the only vehicles that took a hit last week.

The compact segment was down 0.93% and the sub-compact luxury crossover segment dropped by 1.38%, which was the worst overall performance. In line with the average weekly adjustment of 0.57% over the previous four weeks.

(Click Here for details about Hyundai and Kia’s sales predictions for 2017.)

The news on used cars wasn’t all bad as the collector car market is expected to perform well as the auction season shifts into high gear.

“We’ve been looking forward to it for months, and Arizona Auction Week is now here,” said Eric Lawrence, director of specialty markets.

“Hundreds of thousands of collectors, enthusiasts, and dealers are on their way to sunny Scottsdale to attend auctions hosted by Barrett-Jackson, Russo and Steele, RM Sotheby’s, Bonham’s, Gooding, Silver and Worldwide. We expect to see big numbers, especially given the recent tax changes, and several new world records set.”

(To see more about December auto sales forecasts, Click Here.)

If the latest round of auctions is an indicator, there is reason to be optimistic. Some of the vehicles that hit and sold on the auction block include a 1959 Ferrari California Spider LWB Alloy $17,990,000; 2018 Bugatti Chiron $3,772,500; 1965 Aston Martin DB5 Convertible $2,700,000; and 2015 Porsche 918 Weissach Spyder $1,732,000. All were from the RM Sothbey’s “Icons” sale, which totaled more than $45 million and an 84% sell-through rate.

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