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Used LCV values show little sign of 'tipping', says auction boss

Shoreham Vehicle Auctions MD Alex Wright

Values of used LCVs are continuing to rise despite increasing volumes of used LCVs coming to auction and record registrations of new LCVs, according to Shoreham Vehicle Auctions MD Alex Wright.

Over a four-year period from January 2012 to December 2015, the average number of newly registered LCVs has rocketed, with a record number of units – 371,830 – registered in 2015, the highest since 2007, said Wright.

This has resulted in a delayed influx of vehicles into the used market, with volumes steadily rising over the same period.

Despite these increases, average used prices have also continued to rise.

Wright put this down to “extremely strong demand” from buyers, who have a varied selection of stock in good condition to choose from, particularly with vehicles between two and four-years-old.

He said: “It’s remarkable that prices continue to rise in line with increasing volumes, although we expect to reach the tipping point where supply outstrips demand, which will place pressure on prices, but recent trends have defied this so far.”

With increasing numbers of SMEs purchasing LCVs between two and four-years-old on short-term PCP deals, vehicles are then being sent back into the auctions for the manufacturer’s franchised dealers to purchase at a reduced rate.

Furthermore, SMEs that cannot secure vehicle finance are heading to auction to secure LCVs between four and six-years-old.

Continued demand is helping to keep the market buoyant and prices high.

According to the latest LCV manufacturing data, there’s no sign of LCV registrations letting up, with 27,880 new units registered in April 2016.

This was an 11.7% increase on the April 2015 total, and year-to-date, a 3.3% increase on the first four months of last year.

Wright said: “The record number of new registrations we have seen in recent years that continue to filter into the used market will only lead to volumes rising.

“One thing is certain; it’s not a question of if, but when and by how much values start to drop as the careful balance of supply and demand starts to tip.”

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