Work Truck Solutions released its first-quarter 2023 Commercial Vehicle Market Analysis. According to the report, the slow but steady increase of inventory available from OEMs is affecting commercial vehicle sales in predictable ways.
Increasing Inventory Options
Work Truck Solutions noted that, with Ford leading the charge among OEMs, new on-lot inventory per dealer continued to grow, up 0.8% quarter-over-quarter and 46.4% year-over-year.
But, the report noted that with new inventory levels still only 46.3% of what they were in 2019, used vehicles continued to help fill the demand, as evidenced by the rise in used on-lot inventory per dealer, up 125.4% year-over-year.
Commercial Vehicle Pricing
According to the recent study from Work Truck Solutions, average used-vehicle prices continued a modest decline, down 1.7% quarter-over-quarter and 4.3% year-over-year.
Continuing the trend seen since the second quarter of 2022, new work trucks and vans still carry a significant price tag with prices increasing 2.4% quarter-over-quarter and 4.1% year-over-year.
Within new vehicle averages, Empty Cargo Vans by themselves showed no signs of stagnation with prices rising:
- 5.0% quarter-over-quarter and 5.8% year-over-year for light-duty work vans.
- 1.6% quarter-over-quarter and 7.8% year-over-year for medium-duty vans.
The prices of Service Trucks also continued their upward trend with:
- Light duty is up 1.9% quarter-over-quarter, and 6.9% year-over-year,
- Medium duty is up 1.5% quarter-over-quarter and 6% year-over-year.
The median mileage of used work trucks and vans maintained its upward arc, with increases of 6.3% quarter-over-quarter and 11.6% year-over-year.
Looking Forward at Commercial Vehicle Trends
Although the combination of higher mileage and more available new vehicles is influencing decreased used-vehicle prices, Work Truck Solutions noted that unmet demand is slowing that decrease.
A slight increase in days-to-turn shows both new and used inventory staying on dealer lots longer, a trend Work Truck Solutions noted it will keep a close eye on in the coming months.
“An interesting note in this data is that even with higher new-vehicle prices, searches for new trucks and vans remained strong, demonstrating that customers are still dependent on replacing and adding vehicles for their businesses,” said Aaron Johnson, CEO of Work Truck Solutions. “On the other side of the equation is an uncertain economy, inflation, and rising interest rates. Taking all of this information in aggregate means the commercial vehicle industry is likely moving into not only a more competitive phase. Plus, savvy dealerships will need to utilize data-driven insights to position themselves as business partners rather than mere vendors.”