The final month of 2019 saw wholesale market sales decline 20.0% versus November.
Driven by a lack of quality used vendor stock, all sectors recorded decreased sales over the previous month. December sales are on average 8.4 months older than 12 months ago, at 74.1 months but 3.1 months younger than last month. Average first-time conversion rates over the past 12 months improved 4.9% to 82.0%. In December, average mileage stands at 77,445 miles, a reduction of over 5,400 miles on November and 3,100 on December 2018. With the reduction in mileage and vehicle age, the average sale price for the month increased by over £550. December’s average sale price was less than £100 lower than at the same point last year.
Demand for vehicles in this sector reduced again in December, with the average sale price down over £150 on November. The Citroen Berlingo, Ford Transit Connect, VW Caddy and Vauxhall Combo have performed positively, with older stock such as the Vauxhall Astravan and Corsavan, Renault Clio van, and Fiat Doblo van all holding their value during the month. The average mileage of small vans sold in December fell by over 3,250 miles, while first-time conversion rates decreased 5.8% to 81.9%.
This popular sector saw sales fall by over 500 units, but returned a £100 increase in the average sales price. Good levels of demand remain for the Ford Transit Custom, Renault Trafic and Vauxhall Vivaro, with premium brands such as the VW Transporter and Mercedes Vito continuing to benefit from a loyal following. December was another strong month for the tidiest crew vans, with the best continuing to sell well.
The average mileage of those medium vans sold in December decreased by over 3,725 miles while first-time conversion rates remained virtually static at 83.2%.
This sector saw sales decrease 53% in December – however, average sales prices increased by £67. Across this sector, there was demand for anything straight and tidy or sensibly priced, with the Ford Transit and Mercedes Sprinter proving particularly popular.
Late-plate Citroen Relays and Peugeot Boxers were also popular choices, while buyers working to smaller budgets opted for older VW Crafter, Fiat Ducato and Renault Master models.
The average mileage of large vans sold in December decreased by over 3,500 miles with first-time conversion rates increasing by 2.4% to 85.5%.
Sales of 4x4 pick-ups dropped by over 40% in December, while average prices remained just over £9,000 and on a par with November prices. Higher-spec Mitsubisih L200, Nissan Navara and Ford Ranger models continue to attract buyers, with those fitted with automatic transmissions in greatest demand. Older 4x4s caught the imagination and sold with ease, especially to those working to tighter budgets. The Fiat Fullback continues to struggle, while higher-spec Land Rover Defender models performed well.
Average mileage of those 4x4s sold increased by nearly 3,950 miles during December with first-time conversion rates reducing by 4.4% to 73.4%.
Andy Picton is chief commercial vehicle editor at Glass’s