J.D. Power reports strong Class 8 market

Bill
Updated Oct 21, 2021

J.D. Power reports in its October Commercial Truck Guidelines industry report that the sky’s the limit for the Class 8 market, with auction pricing jumping notably and retail pricing continuing its record-breaking trajectory. And, the medium-duty market was generally strong, too.

In the auction space for September, J.D. Power reports its benchmark group of 4-6 year-old trucks garnered 18.3 percent more money month over month. Compared with the first 9 months of 2020, this group is running 85.1 percent ahead, and compared with the same period of 2019, 62.1 percent ahead. Late-model trucks have appreciated an average of 4.9 percent per month in 2021 thus far.

  • Model year (MY) 2018: $83,809 average; $11,984 (16.7 percent) higher than August
  • MY 2017: $62,475 average; $6,894 (12.4 percent) higher than August
  • MY 2016: $58,792 average; $12,837 (27.9 percent) higher than August
  • MY 2015: $40,884 average; $101 (0.2 percent) higher than August
  • MY 2014: $31,055 average; $3,319 (9.7 percent) higher than August

“The sense of urgency is as strong as ever in the auction lanes, with buyers continuing to pay essentially retail pricing for desirable trucks. Expect the rest of the year to feel similar,” the report states.

J.D. Power average auction pricingLate-model trucks have appreciated 4.9 percent per month
on average in 2021 to date.

In the Class 8 retail space for September, it was another month for record pricing.

J.D. Power reports the average sleeper tractor retailed in September was 74 months old, had 459,393 miles and brought $78,207. Compared with August, this average sleeper was one month older, had 6,506 (1.4 percent) more miles and brought $3,788 (5.1 percent) more money. Compared with September 2020, this average sleeper was 5 months older, had 10,465 (2.2 percent) fewer miles and brought $36,141 (85.9 percent) more money.

Looking at trucks two to six years of age, September’s average pricing was as follows:

  • MY 2020: $130,748; $11,196 (9.4 percent) higher than August
  • MY 2019: $104,271; $2,062 (2.0 percent) higher than August
  • MY 2018: $85,251; $2,608 (3.2 percent) higher than August
  • MY 2017: $70,043; $3,504 (5.3 percent) higher than August
  • MY 2016: $55,747; $3,565 (6.8 percent) higher than August

“Retail inquiries were healthy in September, but many potential buyers walked away empty-handed as there were just not enough trucks available to sell,” the report states.

Dealers retailed an average of 4.4 trucks per rooftop in September, 0.4 truck lower than August. Year over year, the first 9 months of 2021 are running 0.8 truck ahead of the same period of 2020, and 0.8 truck higher than the same period of 2019.

Jd Power Retail Pricing

The medium-duty market was generally strong, with cabovers and heavier conventional trucks bringing higher pricing month-over-month but lighter conventional trucks pulling back a bit.

Class 3-4 cabovers made up the ground lost in the previous two months and then some, returning the highest average pricing so far this year at $23,504, according to J.D. Power. This figure is $3,155 (15.5 percent) higher than August, and $11,129 (89.9 percent) higher than September 2020. The first 9 months of 2021 are running 63.1 percent higher than the same period of 2020, and 26.1 percent higher than the same period of 2019. Trucks in this segment have gained an average of 2.2 percent per month in value thus far in 2021.

Class 6 conventional pricing averaged $36,451 in September, $2,965 (8.9 percent) higher than August and $13,349 (57.8 percent) higher than September 2020. The first 9 months of 2021 are running 32.2 percent ahead of the same period of 2020, and 24.7 percent higher than the same period of 2019. Trucks in this group have gained an average of 4.2 percent per month so far in 2021.

“As of this writing in mid-October, shipping backlogs and parts shortages are as bad as they’ve ever been, and mainstream media outlets are already talking about critical conditions leading into the holidays. Inflation — and the Fed’s response to it — is probably the biggest factor on our minds at the moment. In terms of the used truck market, we expect conditions to remain hot into next year, barring any unforeseen economic changes,” the report states.

For more on J.D. Power’s most recent report, visit its website.        

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