We’ve crunched most of our 2011 data at this point, and will provide a full 2011 vs. 2010 analysis in our upcoming February GuideLines. In the meantime, here’s a look at year-over-year sales volume in the auction channel for select segments. Data in all graphs has been statistically “cleaned” so as to maintain consistency and eliminate outliers.

The first graph shows Class 3-4 cabovers. Interestingly, 2011 saw substantially less volume in all but the newest model years. In percentage terms, 2010 volume was just under 6% higher overall. With supply not an issue in this segment, the logical explanation would be that demand decreased in 2011. However, as we saw in the last blog, pricing increased in 2011. So we have a scenario in which fewer trucks sold for higher prices, even though there were more than enough of these trucks to meet demand. There are a few theories that might explain this behavior – we’ll address these in more detail in the February GuideLines.

The next graph shows Class 6 conventionals. Sales volume follows a similar trajectory year-over-year, with 2010 outperforming 2011 by a slim margin until we get to the older model years. In percentage terms, 2010 volume was just over 4% higher overall. As with cabovers, there was no shortage of supply, and yet pricing increased in 2011. Again, there are a few potential explanations, which we’ll address in GuideLines.

The final graph looks at Class 8 volume. Specifically, this data includes all highway tractors - daycabs and sleepers. Construction/vocational vehicles are not included. Volume by model year follows a similar trajectory in both time periods, with 2010 edging out 2011. In percentage terms, 2010 volume was a substantial 34.8% higher than 2011. Here, the story is more clear. Demand in this segment greatly outstripped supply, with inventory in 2011 even slimmer than in 2010. There were simply fewer trucks available in 2011.

Look for our full GuideLines the third week of February. In the meantime, feel free to post any questions or comments below.