Van dealers are increasingly ignoring used vehicles, especially larger models, that need a significant amount of repair work before they can be sold.
That’s according to speakers on an LCV panel at the first meeting of the Vehicle Remarketing Association (VRA) for 2024, held last week.
All the panellists agreed that there were too many big vans in poor condition currently on the market.
Cap HPI senior editor for commercial vehicles and motorcycles Julian Pullen said: “It used to be said that if a van needed £1,000 of work, it sold for £1,500 less. Now that latter figure is more like £2,000 to £3,000. People just don’t want scruffy stock.”
Manheim national LCV manager Stuart Peak said: “Dealers know that if they buy a vehicle that needs work, it could take between six and 12 weeks to get it done at the moment plus, given the present market, its value might fall £500-£600 in the meantime.”
Motor Auction Group head of digital sales Graham Howes said that it was easy to understand the logic of dealers, who did not want their money to be tied up for an extended period.
He said: “There’s a lot of untidy large vans around and, in the time it takes to get them up to standard, they could turn around two or three vehicles in better condition.”
Auto Trader senior insight manager Louis Maxwell said: “We’re seeing interest from buyers concentrated in newer vans and the oldest stock.
“It’s the middle group – anywhere from two to five years - especially where condition is poor that is under the most pressure.”
Cap HPI’s Pullen suggested that the market situation could lead to a growth in companies that help to recondition vehicles before sale.
He said: “We think there could be new developments in this area. Certainly, there’s a lot of poor-quality stock around at the moment and businesses that bring it up to scratch quickly and efficiently could fill a gap in the market.”