CV Market Tracker

Superheated van market setting new records

Matthew Davock

From the number of buyers to conversion rates and average selling price, Manheim is seeing records tumbling.

The UK’s number 1 CV auction company is also dispelling a widely held perception that it is the lack of wholesale supply driving current van demand to record levels. Manheim has confirmed that June’s stock volume is only 12% down year on year. Coupled to improved conversion rates, the total number of vans sold in the month of June 2020 is higher than June 2019 and January and February 2020.

Manheim’s other market performance indicators reveal that the average selling price of vans in June has increased by 16% compared to pre-lockdown levels, with average age and mileage remaining unchanged in both periods.

Manheim reported strong performance for Euro 6 vans in June, seeing their highest volume penetration to date with 44% of all vans sold fitted with this cleanest engine technology. Accompanying this, demand bounced compared to pre-lockdown, seeing a 6% increase in average selling price, to £10,751.

Pre-Euro 6 van volumes represented 56% of the total sold by Manheim in June; in common with their younger cousins their values also bounced, an average of 14% more from a price guide perspective versus pre lockdown levels, with an average selling price of £5,194.

Manheim has been using its multi-award winning Simulcast online bidding platform to operate its online auction programme across all centres. Representing two new monthly records, average June buyer attendances were up 22% compared to pre-lockdown and over 800 unique buyers purchased online.

Stuart Peak, national LCV manager for Manheim, added: “We are running daily van auction events and the stock is selling fast, with hammer prices often above guide by double digits. We are seeing the strongest demand for cleanest ready-to-retail vans which are incredibly sought after.”

Peak continues: “Of the 800 van buyers in June, a quarter had never purchased online. Our buyers and vendors have adapted well to our online-only sale programme and our lockdown approach has received great feedback in terms of customer experience and our prioritisation of the health and safety of team members and customers alike. Our buyers reported strong retail demand in June, with three quarters saying they had a record breaking month for units and profit. A number of dealers increased their retail prices mid-month based on the exceptional wholesale and retail demand levels.”

Matthew Davock, director of commercial vehicles, Manheim, added: “No one could have predicted the record breaking market over the last seven weeks. With our online auction events we have been very pleased with the growth in buyer audience as well as their engagement and participation. Our technology has underpinned our agility in opening new online shop windows. Our unique valuation capability and product knowledge has enabled us to add value for vendors with a channel management service. This has incorporated virtual auction lanes and buy now events to optimise sale values and speed of sale.”

“Undoubtedly external stimulus has fuelled current pent-up van retail demand, including the relaxation of business rates and rents, deferral of VAT payments and the employee furlough and self-employed business support loans and grants. The reality is that commercial vehicles underpin the operation of the UK, so whilst there are sadly losers at this time there are also winners, specifically in home delivery, so I remain positive that the used commercial vehicle market will not slow anytime soon.”

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