GAINSVILLE, GA – Reports from more than 60 auctions across the country show continued strong and increasing values for used vehicles in both car and truck segments — with 72 percent of the adjustments this past week necessitating a raise in value, according to Ricky Beggs, Black Book VP and managing editor.

For the second consecutive week, all 10 car segments increased, up overall by $61, led by the most fuel-efficient models. Entry-level cars, entry mid-sized cars, and compact cars increased by $127, $115, and $75 respectively.

“With the trucks finishing $15 above the zero-dollar baseline, eight of the 14 segments went up in value. All of the crossover segments increased, along with the minivan segments,” Beggs said. “A rather intriguing positive movement was with the luxury SUVs, which increased by $55. More expected were the next largest increase at +$52 for compact SUVs and mid-size pickups at +$51.”

Beggs described three “reasonable” expectations for continued strength in the market for so many segments:

  1. A continuing better economy with quite a bit of pent-up demand. “Even the trucks are pretty solid as the service industry is in need of better and even newer tools,” Beggs said.

  2. Rising fuel prices continue to support the increase in values and demand for smaller, more efficient vehicles. The current Middle East conflicts and unrest continues to create a focus on the future volatility of gas and oil prices.

  3. The supply of both new and late model used continues to be low. With even more concern that the extended closure of plants in Japan and the U.S. for both parts and final assembly will tighten the supply chain, interest in fuel-efficient vehicles is creating excess demand for an already tight supply of these slightly used models.

“These factors driving used values have been the primary issues that have caused increases in values on some models from 13-16 percent over the past few weeks. If you want a late-model Prius, Yaris, Cobalt, Focus, Versa, or even Civic Hybrid, just keep your hand raised in the auction lanes,” Beggs said.

Beggs noted franchised dealers should prepare to pay a premium due to everyone bidding for the same unit.