Buyers of used LCVs have been purchasing based on need rather than desire during August, according to auction firm Aston Barclay.

In contrast to previously-seen seasonality in the market, with different van types in demand at different times of the year, Aston Barclay said August had seen buyers focused on essential purchases instead, either to replace vehicles that were too old, or to expand a growing company’s fleet.

It said companies had shunned badge loyalty, and bought used LCVs instead based on their individual budget, and suitability for the job in hand.

The findings are based on Aston Barclay’s Desirability Index, which ranks vehicles based on web views prior to sale, the number of bids per sale, and the sale price achieved as a percentage of Cap average.

Topping the index in August were the Volkswagen Crafter and Peugeot Boxer panel vans, but Aston Barclay said the month’s index also included smaller panel vans, car-derived vans, and pick-ups.

Aston Barclay LCV sales manager Geoff Flood said: “What we have seen this month is that buyers have been focussing on purchases that fulfil their immediate needs, rather than the more considered buyer behaviour that we usually observe throughout the year.

“The lack of liquidity in the current used market, added to the knowledge that the new LCV stock issues are beginning to improve, means that many usual market patterns are temporarily on hold while buyers wait for stock levels to rise in the coming months. 

“As a result, we have seen buyers purchasing vehicles that fulfil specific and immediate needs and who are less sensitive to brand, mileage and vehicle spec, but more focused on a vehicle’s utility.”