NADA: Subcompact Cars Bypass Low Gas Prices, KBB: Gas Prices Up but Still Far Down from Year Ago March 19, 2015

Severe Weather Threw February Out of Historic Price Pattern

Jonathan Banks
Executive Automotive Analyst
NADA Used Car Guide

The extreme winter weather in states east of the Mississippi last month softened used vehicle price growth. Wholesale prices of vehicles up to eight years in age grew by 0.8% over January levels last month, slightly below NADA’s forecasted range of 1% to 1.5%. February saw a 1.8 percentage point drop in NADA’s used vehicle price index, which fell from 125.3 in January to 123.5 last month. That was about one percentage point lower than the typical 1.7% increase average for that month from 1996 to 2014.

Wholesale Prices and New Vehicle Sales in March 2015 Guidelines

Subcompact Car Prices Improved 1% Even With Low Gas Prices and Rise in Late-Model Supply:
Mid-size vans rose by a similar 0.9% in spite of 20% increase in late-model volume.

Luxury Prices Went Usual Route for Month with Prices Declining Across Board:
Falling by 1%, luxury compact car prices gave up the most ground in February.

March Has Been Seeing 4% Price Increases through Pent-Up Demand:
April should see 0.5% to 1% drop – less than 2% rate forecasted in February.
Foyil_Sean_Kelley Blue Book

Crossovers Do Very Well for their Utility and Fuel Efficiency

Sean Foyil
Senior Analyst, Vehicle Valuation
Kelley Blue Book

Average auction values were up by a total of $235 in the first two months of this year compared to a gain of $72 in January and February 2014. The year started 2.3% higher than the previous year and continued up to 3.2% higher than one year earlier. The used vehicle segments that have been performing well this year have been the sports car segment (up 3.7%), compact (up 2.1 %), mid-size (up 2.8%) and full-size (up 2.6%) crossover segments; and the full-size car segment (up 2.3%).

Blue Book Market Report on Auction Values and Fuel Prices

Average Price of Gasoline Rose 22 Cents per Gallon to $2.21 Nationally:
Crossovers did well as consumers want smaller, more fuel-efficient utility vehicles.

Average Price of Gasoline Still Down $1.12 or 34% from Year Ago:
Driving demand away from electric and hybrid segments, and truck and crossover segments have seen momentum.

Average Retention for Mid-Size Sedans Remaining Lower than Previous Years:
One cause can be increase in lease returns in this segment in the auction lanes.

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