This week’s edition of Black Book Market Insights report offered analysis in four different places. Editors shared their assessments not only of the latest wholesale price trends and observations from the lanes, but they also touched on automakers’ recent decisions and what’s happening in the specialty markets.
The newest report began with a prediction from Black Book as editors said, “Auto manufacturers have continued to remain disciplined in the past several months on incentive levels. However, if new-vehicle sales slow further, we expect this trend to reverse.”
Editors continued by looking at volume-weighted car information. Black Book determined overall car segment values decreased by 0.42 percent last week. That’s slightly lower than the previous four-week average decline, which was 0.47 percent.
Among cars, Black Book noticed the compact car, midsize car, full-size car and sporty car segments showed lowest depreciation with readings being no greater than 0.31 percent. Conversely, editors pointed out subcompact cars softened by 1.23 percent or $65 last week.
Again looking at volume-weighted data, Black Book reported that overall truck segment values (including pickups, SUVs and vans) decreased by 0.38 percent last week. Like cars, the latest truck reading was a little lower than the average spotted during the previous four weeks, which as 0.42 percent.
In the truck space, editors determined the subcompact crossover and compact crossover/SUV segments depreciated the most as they each slide by 0.65 percent.
“Used-vehicle depreciation trends remain steady as the seasonal lift in demand has yet to show up,” Black Book executive vice president of operations Anil Goyal said.
Turning next to what Black Book gathered from attending about 60 weekly sales nationwide, lane watchers also conveyed the sentiment about the anticipation of retail sales intensifying.
— From Michigan: “Dealers are reporting slow retail traffic, but say that there are signs of improvement in spite of challenging weather in our area.”
— From Washington: “We had more vehicles consigned this week, but the values seemed to still be down. Overall though, the dealers seem to have a positive attitude.”
— From South Carolina: “The inexpensive vehicles continue to carry the sale.”
— From Massachusetts: “A rep for one of the larger accounts stated that this was his best sale of the year with his units selling for good money.”
Update on the specialty markets
As the do at the beginning of each month, Black Book editors offered their views of the specialty markets. Here is their latest observations:
— Collectibles: Black Book indicated the year has started off very well in the collectible car world. Editors recapped the Scottsdale, Ariz., collectible car auctions topped $250 million. The auctions in Paris centered around Retromobile approached $100 million. Mecum generated $135 million in January in Kissimmee, Fla., and Las Vegas.
— Recreational vehicles: “Even though many areas of the country have been on the receiving end of a few bad late winter snowstorms recently, spring really is right around the corner, and shoppers will soon be heading into the dealerships,” Black Book said.
— Powersports: Editors acknowledged 2019 is getting off to a little bit of a slow start in the powersports market. “Values this month are still heading down for most segments, though we are seeing the first positive signs of the spring market beginning to appear,” they said.
— Heavy Duty: Black Book noticed a couple of models dropped quite a bit in February, bringing the overall over the road tractor average depreciation to 0.7 percent. But editors added that most models were on the same pace as last month’s drop.
— Medium Duty: Editors mentioned new-truck sales remain strong through the first quarter, helping to add downward pressure to late-model wholesale values.