ACT Research: Class 8 Volumes Up 23% YTD Despite Declines in June 

According to the preliminary release of ACT Research’s State of the Industry: U.S. Classes 3-8 Used Trucks report for June, used Class 8 volumes (same dealer sales) dropped 6% month over month and 12% year over year in June. However, through the first six months of the year, activity was 23% higher compared with the same period a year ago.

Other data released in ACT’s preliminary report included month-over-month comparisons for June 2021, which showed that average prices increased 5% as average miles fell 1% and average age was unchanged compared with May. Compared with June 2020, average price was 63% higher, with average miles and age lower by 5% and 2%, respectively. On a year-to-date basis, average price was 38% above its year-ago level for the first six months of 2020, with average miles and age down 4% and 3%, respectively.

“The industry is starting to see tougher comparisons, since it did not take long to shake off the immediate effects of COVID-19. Year-to-date gains also started to erode, slipping nine percentage points to 23%,” Steve Tam, vice president at ACT Research, said. “The drop in sales was counter to seasonal expectations, which called for about a 10% increase. However, lack of inventory continues to hamstring sales efforts.”

Regarding used truck prices, Tam said, “For the first time since we started following the used truck market almost 20 years ago, the average price of three-year-old trucks with 300-400,000 miles on them broke the six-figure barrier. The feat is made even more impressive when one considers prices for these late model trucks started the year at just over $70,000. Arguably, the trucks did not change to justify the increase in price. Rather, the simple law of supply and demand has created a scarcity situation, and there is no viable substitute to the venerable Class 8 truck. Hence, prices are through the roof, with no relief in sight.”

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