Used Class 8 retail sales were 11% higher in March than in February—but same-dealer volumes remain much lower compared to the same period a year ago, according to ACT Research. Limited availability of used equipment could persist into 2023, according to the latest analysis from the organization.
March 2022 volumes are down 27% year-over-year, and used heavy-duty equipment costs 90% more than it did a year ago, according to ACT’s State of the Industry: U.S. Classes 3-8 Used Trucks. Prices jumped 8% month-over-month in March. Average miles on used Class 8 vehicle sales were down 2% from February; the average age of the trucks was down 4%. Compared to March 2021, miles were up 2%, and age was 1% higher.
“Used Class 8 same-dealer retail sales volumes enjoyed a second straight month of improved volumes in March, rising 11% sequentially,” said Steve Tam, an ACT Research VP and analyst. “Typical seasonality called for a 13% increase, so while better recent new truck sales may have contributed, the gain was not unanticipated.”
The report from ACT provides data on the 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).
“Positively, March new truck sales were meaningfully higher, exceeding expectations. As the associated trades work their way through the process, they should also contribute to improved used truck sales,” Tam added.
Looking into the future, Tam said that sales usually slow to “below average levels” in April and May before returning to the mean in June and July.
“As has been the case for more than a year now, it will be the supply chain that dictates the pace and timing of new truck deliveries, which in turn largely control the tempo of the used truck market,” Tam said. “The foremost topic in used truck dealers’ minds is where values are headed. Driven by new truck market and supply-chain challenges, it seems no truck customers, new or used, can get the equipment they want when they want it. And while some progress is being made with regard to part shortages, limitations are likely to persist through 2022 and into 2023.”