SANTA MONICA, California — A near-new Fiat 500, Hyundai Veloster, Toyota Prius C and Volkswagen Jetta are among the vehicles that have experienced extreme price drops in the used-car market, according to Edmunds' Q1 2015 Used Vehicle Market Report.
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, the report said.
For some small used-car models, the year-over-year price drops are "extreme."
A near-new Fiat 500 cost 12.5 percent less on average in Q1 2015 than it did during Q1 2014. The Prius C recorded a similar price drop of 10.1 percent, while the Veloster had a -8.4 percent drop. The Jetta recorded a -7.9 percent decrease.
Overall, used-car shoppers in the market for "near-new" subcompact and compact cars are paying 2.8 percent and 2 percent less, respectively, than they did a year ago. Near-new is defined as five years old and younger.
"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 a larger supply comes lower prices," said Edmunds.com Director of Industry Analysis Jessica Caldwell.
She added: "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."
Truck and SUV buyers are faring differently, however.
The average price of used trucks was up 10 percent year over year in the first quarter. The average price for used large SUVs was up 8.7 percent.
Affordable pump prices have created a spike in demand for larger gas-guzzlers.
Edmunds says: This report is a must-read for anyone venturing out into the used-car market.