By Andy Picton, chief commercial vehicle editor at Glass's
Light Commercial Vehicle (LCV) registrations fell for the second month running, with total registrations falling 11.0% versus October 2018.
Breaking the month down by sectors reveals growth for Vans under 2.0 tonnes of 2.0%, and Vans between 2.0-2.5 tonnes (31.0%), whilst the Pickup sector and Vans between 2.5-3.5 tonnes declined by 12.0% and 19.2% respectively.
The introduction of Worldwide Harmonised Light Vehicle Test Procedure (WLTP) at the beginning of September has resulted in shortages of some compliant vehicles due to build and delivery delays, especially for chassis conversions.
With many buyers taking advantage of strong offers on LCVs during the first three quarters of the year, the market is looking subdued with buyers reluctant to change vehicles with the ongoing political and economic uncertainty continuing to influence business confidence.
Top five LCV registrations
Nevertheless, the LCV market is still ahead of 2018, with year to date (YTD) registrations standing at 311,989 (302,741 – 2018 YTD).
This equates to a 3.1% increase on the same period last year, with buyers continuing to seek out the cleanest vehicles and the best deals.
Used Light Commercial Vehicle (LCV) Auction Market Overview - October
The October wholesale market kick-started into life with a near 50% improvement in sales over September.
Fired by a shortage in quality used stock and extended lead in times for new vehicles, every sector reported increased sales over the previous month with average first-time conversion rates increasing 7.2% to 85.6%.
October stock sales are on average 9 months older than twelve months ago, at 73.1 months and 4.3 months older than last month.
Average mileage is 80,676 miles, a decrease of 63 miles on September, but over 1,750 miles more than October 2018.
The average sale price for the month decreased by over £150, reflecting the slightly older stock on offer.
October’s average sale price was nearly £800 lower than at the same point last year.
Overall, October sales volumes declined 26.7% versus October 2018, highlighting the 12-month market volatility driven by continuing economic and political uncertainty.
Small Vans: 35.4% of overall sales
Although volume can be an issue in this sector, Berlingo, previous generation Combo, Citan and Transit Connect continue to perform positively, with prices on a par with September.
Quality examples of Kangoo, NV200 and Doblo van, regular value brands, have also seen average prices holding firm for the month.
Volumes sold in this sector increased over 1.5% versus September whilst average prices remained static and equal to October last year.
The average mileage of sold small vans in October increased by 250 miles and first time conversion rates increased 6.8% to 86.6%.
Medium Vans: 35.3% of overall sales
This popular sector saw good levels of demand for the Transporter, Transit Custom, Trafic, Vivaro and Dispatch over the month across all ages, with the tidiest examples selling well.
Volumes sold in this sector increased 1.7% on the previous month, with average prices in line with last month.
Average mileage of those sold in October decreased by over 4,350 miles and by over 6,600 miles on the same point last year.
First time conversion rates for October were up 4.9% to 87.2%.
Large Vans: 19.1% of overall sales
The Transit and Sprinter remain the favourites in this sector, with the Relay, Boxer, Master and Movano seen as good value.
The Crafter is growing in popularity and if priced sensibly has little difficulty in selling.
Condition and mileage in this sector is particularly important.
Average prices of those sold in October were up over £100.
Average mileage over the same period was down by over 7,750 miles and by over 1,600 on the same point last year.
First time conversion rates for October were up 10.5% to 84.8%.
4x4 Pickups: 10.2% of overall sales
The L200, Navara, Ranger, Hilux and D-Max continue to achieve the lion’s share of sales during October, with those fitted with automatic transmissions in greatest demand.
The Amarok continues to struggle, with only the nicest catching trade attention.
Older 4x4s, regardless of badge, sell in regular numbers, with traders seeing them as good value for money.
Overly hard worked examples with excessive mileages remain difficult to shift.
Sales of 4x4 Pickups increased for the first time in four months however, average prices were marginally down on September.
Average mileage of those sold, was down by over 1,000 miles during October and by nearly 2,300 on the same point last year.
First time conversion rates for October were up 13.2% to 78.2%.