February 2020 Kontos Kommentary: Current Used Vehicle Market Conditions


The strong start to 2020 continued in February as average wholesale prices were up again month-over-month and year-over-year. Both car and truck prices were up.


According to KAR Global Analytical Services’ monthly analysis of wholesale used vehicle prices by vehicle model class, wholesale prices in February averaged $11,339 – up 2.2% compared to January and up 5.2% relative to February 2019, as seen in the following table:

Average prices for Fullsize SUV/Crossovers were considerably higher than last February, as a higher percentage of younger, low-mileage units were sold.

When holding constant for sale type, model-year-age, mileage, and model class segment – using criteria that characterize off-lease units – prices were up on a year-over-year basis for both midsize cars and midsize SUV/CUVs, as seen in the following table:

Prices for midsize cars continue to outperform SUVs/Crossovers in year-over-year growth within this market segment, but both model classes registered strong gains.

Average wholesale prices for used vehicles remarketed by manufacturers were up 2.3% month-over-month and up 7.7% year-over-year. Prices for fleet/lease consignors were down 1.2% sequentially but up 5.0% annually. Average prices for dealer consignors were up 3.8% versus January and were up 7.8% relative to February 2019.

February CPO sales were up 10.3% from the prior month and up 12.5% year-over-year, according to figures from Autodata. Year-to-date sales are up 10.4%.

Source: Analysis is based on over seven million annual sales transactions from over 250 of the largest U.S. wholesale auto auctions, including those of ADESA as well as other auction companies. KAR Global Analytical Services segregates these transactions to study trends by vehicle model class, sale type, model year, etc.

Disclaimer: The views and analysis provided herein relate to the vehicle remarketing industry as a whole and may not relate directly to KAR Auction Services, Inc. The views and analysis are not the views of KAR Auction Services, its management or its subsidiaries; and their accuracy is not warranted.

Forward-Looking Statements: The statements contained in this report and statements that the company may make orally in connection with this report that are not historical facts (including, but not limited to, expectations, estimates, assumptions and projections regarding the industry and business) may be forward-looking statements. Words such as “should,” “may,” “will,” “anticipates,” “expects,” “intends,” “plans,” “believes,” “seeks,” “estimates,” “promises”, “likely to” and similar expressions identify forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements are subject to risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from the results projected, expressed or implied by the forward-looking statements. Factors that could cause or contribute to such differences include those matters disclosed in the company’s Securities and Exchange Commission filings. The company does not undertake any obligation to update any forward-looking statements.

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