Work Truck Solutions released its 2022 analysis of the commercial vehicle market. Work Truck Solutions collects national data reflecting the customization of commercial vehicles after the chassis, or van, is manufactured by an OEM, which defines their unique commercial use case.
In addition, the company announced its Commercial Playbook series, aimed to help dealerships selling to commercial fleet businesses.
A Silver Lining is Growing
According to a release from Work Truck Solutions, data for commercial vehicle (CV) sales compiled for 2022 confirmed much of what the company anticipated, along with a few positive surprises.
“Average prices, availability, mileage, and days to turn (DTT) confirmed what was expected; the story of a supply chain devastated by a global pandemic,” noted the release.
The silver lining is a steady recovery marked by four quarters of positive trends. The first quarter of 2022 may have been the turning point in the health of the automotive supply chain, and the outlook for the coming year is for continued recovery, although likely at a slow pace, as there are still supply chain hurdles to overcome.
The availability of new vehicle inventory is a prime concern for dealers and business owners alike. New on-lot CV inventory per dealer was up 36% in the fourth quarter of 2022 compared to the first quarter.
Work Truck Solutions did note that, although the total numbers were still approximately half of what they were back in the fourth quarter of 2020, the averages reveal an upward direction throughout 2022, a trend unseen in the previous two years.
Key Takeaways from Commercial Vehicle Market Sales in 2022
When examining used work trucks and vans, Work Truck Solutions shared a few key takeaways:
- Used on-lot commercial inventory per dealer continued to skyrocket, reaching an all-time high for the past three years in the fourth-quarter of 2022 and marking a 144% increase over the fourth quarter of 2021.
- Additionally, the increasing availability of new work trucks and vans affects used vehicle sales and pricing. For example, while the average price of a new CV reached an all-time high of $53,162 in the fourth quarter of 2022, the average price of a used CV declined in both the third and fourth quarter of 2022, representing an 8.3% drop from the second quarter of 2022.
Reviewing days to turn (DTT) data revealed intriguing points as well:
- Average DTT for used work vans and trucks increased mildly in 2022, suggesting that the higher mileage of the vehicles, coupled with slowly returning new inventory, likely meant buyers were attempting to hold out for new CVs when possible.
- Given that online buyers searched for new vehicles 19% of the time in the first quarter of 2021, compared to 34% in the fourth quarter of 2022, the data appears to corroborate prospective buyers’ interest in new commercial vehicles.
“Analysis of 2021 through 2022 showed a consistent trend in searches for new and used vehicles,” said Aaron Johnson, CEO of Work Truck Solutions. “Although searches for used commercial vehicles outweighed that of new in every quarter, searches for new CVs trended up, while searches for used trended down. Clearly, the desire for new vehicles has not been washed away amidst inventory concerns; if anything, it has increased.”
Releasing the Full Commercial Playbook
Work Truck Solutions has released its Commercial Playbook series to help dealerships recognize a way to expand their revenue through new market development in the small to medium business space.
Championship sports teams win because they have the right players and a solid playbook. The Commercial Playbook series from Work Truck Solutions is designed to help dealerships recognize the opportunities in selling to businesses and to assist them in building their road map to successful growth.
- Chapter 1 - released late in 2022 - highlights how selling to businesses (i.e. commercial vehicles) is a great profit multiplier by outlining many associated revenue opportunities.
- Chapter 2 - recently released - covers the New World [Commercial] Sales Environment and includes a three-step plan to guide the implementation of or expansion in a commercial department.
- Chapter 3 - to be released in February - outlines how an expanded view of commercial-customer care can fuel the growth of a new commercial department and add new products and services to the dealer’s revenue stream.
“Our experience and data enable us to track industry growth and evolving trends, and we’ve collated these metrics and insights into our Commercial Playbook series. Our ultimate goal is to provide actionable insights, along with a roadmap, that help dealers explore the tremendous opportunities within the commercial vehicle business,” said Kathryn Schifferle, chief vision officer at Work Truck Solutions.