Used van values under pressure as volumes rise

Light commercial vehicle volumes rose sharply in January putting pressure on average values and conversion rates, particularly in the fleet, lease and daily rental sector where values fell by 1.0% compared to December. 

Despite this, the headline average LCV value reached a new record level of £6,409 according to BCA, as a richer mix of stock was sold.

Buyer interest remained strong both in the auction hall and online, but the abundance of stock from all sources generally outweighed demand.   However, to put this into context, the last four months have seen the four highest average values on record and average LCV values were up by £508 (8.6%), year-on-year.

Duncan Ward, BCA’s LCV operations director, said: “While January saw good levels of buyer activity at BCA and a busy marketplace, the volumes available from a variety of sources simply outstripped demand.  This impacted conversion rates and average values as buyers were presented with a much wider choice of stock.

“Typically, the best presented and specified vans outperformed the market by some margin, although higher mileage or damaged examples needed to be realistically valued to attract attention from the buyers.  It underlines the importance of appraising and valuing vehicles sensibly and in line with market expectations.

“As we have seen in recent months, there is plenty of interest for any vehicles with an unusual configuration or special equipment and, as always, any vehicle suitable for the delivery or courier markets was sought after.  Vehicles suitable for the construction and building industries remain sought after, with tippers and dropsides selling strongly.”

The fleet and lease LCV sector saw average values fall back by £76 (1.0%) to £7,098 in January as volumes climbed significantly ahead compared to December.   Retained value against MRP (Manufacturer Recommended Price) fell slightly to 35.81%.   Year-on-year, values were up by £478 (7.2%), with average age and mileage declining when compared to the same period in 2015.  

Nearly-new LCV values fell back for the second consecutive month, averaging £14,435 in January, although values were up, year-on-year.   As always, this has to be taken in the context of the very low volumes reaching the market and the model mix factor, as well as the continuing availability of ‘new shape’ models reaching the used market.  

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