Average new vehicle prices rose 6.5% while on-lot per dealer work truck inventory continued to grow, up 87.4% year over year.  -  Photo: Work Truck Solutions | Work Truck

Average new vehicle prices rose 6.5% while on-lot per dealer work truck inventory continued to grow, up 87.4% year over year.

Photo: Work Truck Solutions | Work Truck

Work Truck Solutions 2023 Annual Commercial Vehicle Market Analysis shows on-lot per dealer work truck inventory continued to grow 87.4% year-over-year, with medium-duty vehicles making up over half of the on-lot mix.

The commercial vehicle market has seen remarkable changes in recent years, but most post-pandemic trends have not been completely unforeseen for informed stakeholders. 

Work Truck Solutions’ reports for 2021 and 2022 offered data-driven insights into how the sector was overcoming labor shortages, manufacturing shutdowns, and inventory challenges. In addition, data concerning price changes, inventory levels, days-to-turn, and mileage were analyzed and confirmed a slow-but-steady recovery.

Amid the dramatic shifts in inventory numbers, one element of the commentary has remained consistent: business owners continue to need and purchase commercial vehicles no matter the circumstances around them. Our latest analysis adds punctuation to this point!

New Commercial Vehicle Data for 2023

  • Average new vehicle prices increased 1% in the fourth quarter of 2023 and 6.5% year over year.
  • On-lot per dealer work truck inventory continued to grow, up 20% QoQ and 87.4% YoY. Medium-duty vehicles make up over half of the on-lot mix.
  • Average Days to Turn (DTT) is likely being influenced by the increase in available inventory and showed a slight rise in QoQ (9.2%) and a significant increase YoY (52.2%). Last year, limited inventory was often sold before hitting the lot.
  • Movement of new vehicles increased to the highest value for the year, up 7.8% QoQ and 17% YoY.

Note that although new inventory levels outpaced movement growth, which likely caused the increase in DTT, work trucks and vans carried higher price tags than last year. The total sales of new commercial vehicles increased significantly.

Used Commercial Vehicle Data for 2023

  • Median mileage of used work trucks and vans increased 5.9% QoQ and 10.1% YoY. 
  • Average used vehicle prices decreased 2.1% QoQ and 1.8% YoY.
  • Onlot Inventory has declined and fell 6.2% QoQ and 12.1% YoY.
  • Average DTT showed a slight increase in QoQ of 6% and 6.8% YoY. 
  • Movement numbers fell at an accelerated pace in the fourth quarter, with average moved used work trucks/vans per dealer decreasing 8.7% QoQ and 10.8% YoY.

Commercial Alt-Fuel Vehicle Data

The future of the commercial vehicle market is in the very early stages of alt-fuel transformation, which is largely being driven by net-zero regulations and mandates.

“As the availability of regulation compliant vehicles manifests at dealerships, more data will be available to assess the impact on the commercial vehicle market,” said Aaron Johnson, CEO of Work Truck Solutions. “This data will provide insights into the adoption rates of alternative fuel vehicles (AFVs) and how they are being used by fleets, and we anticipate reporting on this specific vehicle segment in coming days as the data becomes more significant across the commercial vehicle market.”

Driving Thoughts

The commercial vehicle market has been impacted by a two-year manufacturing disruption, leading to increased availability of used vehicles. As new vehicle inventory levels increase, the used vehicle segment takes a hit. However, the trade-off is that more new vehicles are available for purchase, which has led to a YoY market cannibalization. 

In 2023, new work truck sales outpaced used vehicle sales by a ratio of 2:1. While the new vehicle market is trending positively for dealers, the used truck segment is showing signs of challenges with decreased prices and less inventory. 

When speaking of 2024, Johnson noted, “The work truck market for new vehicles is trending positively for dealers, with higher prices and expanded inventory levels. Conversely, the used truck segment is showing some signs of challenges with decreased prices and less inventory. 

About the author
Shantell Guerra

Shantell Guerra

Customer Success Director

Shantell Guerra is the Customer Success Director at Bobit.

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