SANTA MONICA, Calif. — May 27, 2015 — Prices are down for some of the most popular segments of used cars, even as overall used car prices climbed to an all-time high in the first quarter of 2015, reports car-buying platform Edmunds.com.
According to Edmunds' Q1 2015 Used Vehicle Market Report, used car shoppers in the market for "near-new" (five years old and younger) subcompact and compact cars are paying 2.8 percent and 2.0 percent less, respectively, than they did just a year ago. Shoppers are also seeing lower prices for near-new used midsize cars (-1.6 percent), minivans (-2.0 percent), and entry sport cars (-2.1 percent). The price decreases in these segments stand in stark contrast to overall used car pricing trends. In the first quarter of 2015, Edmunds.com analysts noted a 7.1 percent year-over-year increase to an all-time high of $18,088 per vehicle.
"The recent surge in leases for small and midsize cars has spurred an avalanche of post-lease vehicles returning to the used car market, and with larger supply comes lower prices," says Edmunds.com Director of Industry Analysis Jessica Caldwell. "There's no sign that this surge in leasing will slow down any time soon, so shoppers can continue to expect prices of these cars to stay relatively low as they continue to flood the secondhand market in the coming months and years."
For some small used car models, the year-over-year price drops are more extreme. A near-new Fiat 500, for example, cost 12.5 percent less on average in Q1 2015 than it did during Q1 2014. Edmunds analysts found similar price drops for a near-new Toyota Prius c (-10.1 percent), Hyundai Veloster (-8.4 percent) and Volkswagen Jetta (-7.9 percent).
The market has been less kind to used truck and SUV buyers. The average price of used trucks was up 10 percent year over year in the first quarter, and the average price for used large SUVs was up 8.7 percent. Edmunds analysts say that prices are elevated for these vehicles because affordable prices at the pump created a spike in demand for larger gas-guzzlers, both new and used.
Edmunds' Q1 2015 Used Vehicle Market Report offers a wealth of unique insights into the used car market for both buyers and sellers. The report is available for free at http://www.edmunds.com/industry-center/data/used-car-market-quarterly-report.html.
About Edmunds.com, Inc.
Car-shopping website Edmunds.com serves nearly 18 million visitors each month. With Edmunds.com Price Promise®, shoppers can get an instant, upfront price for cars and trucks currently for sale at 10,000 dealer franchises across the U.S. Shoppers can browse not only dealer inventory, but also vehicle reviews, shopping tips, photos, videos and feature stories on both Edmunds' wired site and on its acclaimed mobile apps. Regarded as one of the best places to work in Southern California, Edmunds.com was also named one of "The World's Top 10 Most Innovative Companies of 2015 in Automotive" by Fast Company. Edmunds welcomes all car-shopping questions on its free Live Help Line at 1-855-782-4711 and firstname.lastname@example.org, via text at ED411 and on Twitter and Facebook. The company is based in Santa Monica, Calif. and has a satellite office in downtown Detroit, Mich., but you can find Edmunds from anywhere on YouTube, Pinterest, LinkedIn, Instagram, Google+ and Flipboard.