Van auction at Colchester

November continues with stock shortages and hardening seasonal retail activity


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As we are midway through November we have seen catalogue numbers reduce and vendors’ sections 50% lower in volume terms than peak times in previous quarters. When looking back on October’s performance, conversion rates and performance measures have been the strongest we’ve seen all year.  

With stock shortages some vendors automatically believe buyers will pay strong money no matter what…..that’s not the case and hasn’t been for a couple of years! When the retail market slows buyers stand-off damage, high mileage and duplicate product. Many are reporting bodyshop lead times are becoming a real issue and have been all year. A number of dealers report that stock purchased now may not be on the pitch and ready to retail until early to mid-January. It’s really not that many working days until Christmas…

Vans at a UK auction centreOn the flip side, clean condition and mileage bands around 60,000 miles remain very positive with buyers chasing around the country to purchase these units. As an auctioneer it is extremely noticeable that vans with high specification are still the driving force around the buyers’ bidding activity. Air conditioning and satellite navigation seem to be the real bid pullers and, when combined with metallic paint, is definitely number one in terms of priority. Some are willing to pay beyond premium money to own them.

Over the past 2 weeks I have travelled the country and spoken to many different buyers and I have to say their feedback is almost identical. Firstly they confirm they’re stocking between 30% and 40% more vans than the same point last year and secondly, that the first part of November has proven to be more difficult with slow retail activity.

That’s likely because, in a slower seasonal marketplace, the retail customer has a far greater choice of vans across the UK. Vendors shouldn’t be surprised, in recent months we’ve been reporting the significant year on year increases to sold volumes. It’s supply and demand…..
My opinion is we need to be mindful of the above and price current auction stock with enthusiasm (for the clean and mileage banded stock) and caution (for the damage).
Vendors who follow this approach will enjoy strong buyer brand loyalty and market leading performances in terms of values and conversion rates.  

What’s hot this week versus guide

Ford Connect LWB
The CDV sector in general has shown strong buyer appetite this week
Ford Transit 260/280/350 SWB and MWB
Nissan Navara, Toyota Hilux 3ltr models and Isuzu 4x4’s
Ford Transit 350 15 seater minibuses
Ford Ranger new shape 62-63 plate with mileage bands around the 40k mark
Volkswagen Transporter 102ps and above (140ps making £2,000 above guide this week)
Nissan NV200
Mercedes Sprinter LWB

What’s not so hot this week versus guide

Ford Fiesta
Vauxhall Corsa
Transit Tippers 2011 and younger (many examples have been £1,500 behind guide)
Mitsubishi L200 (including High Spec models)
Volkswagen Transporter 14 plate including Trendline specification (some examples have been £750-1,500 behind guide model, with low mileage they book too close to new T6 deals)
Ford Ranger (New 14 plate plus and old shape models including high spec models, some old models have performed around £1,200 behind guide)
Ford Transit 350 17 seater minibuses (10-13 plate standard 17 seat buses some examples have been £2,500 behind guide).

So, to conclude this week, the LCV market remains healthy. We have seen a decrease in catalogue numbers with most vendors’ sections containing half the volume seen in previous months. Overall I have to pinch myself and remember we are in November! Buyer registration numbers at sales remain positive for this time of the year and the import part for us all is how we engage them at each event.

Thank you again for your much valued business and continued support. Tune in every week to see how we’ve performed. Until then, keep ‘Sharing the CV Love’.

Thanks Matthew

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