Class 3-4 Cabovers have fared well so far in 2012, with a two-month average wholesale price of $10,442 ahead of 2011’s average by $1082 or 10.4%. Average mileage is similar, so we can eliminate that variable. Increased consumer spending is likely resulting in increased demand for daily rentals and urban deliveries – two of this segment’s main markets.

Class 6 Conventionals are still flat, with a 2012 average wholesale price of $12,395 behind 2011’s average by $607 or 4.7%. Average mileage for 2012 is close enough to 2011’s average to keep apples-to-apples comparisons valid. This segment is still exposed to weak sectors of the economy – namely, construction and residential services. Increased consumer confidence could lead to modest increases in spending on landscaping and light construction projects, but the ongoing foreclosure crisis will limit the rate of expansion.

In the short term, look for continued improvement in the lighter-duty cabover segment and flat to limited upward movement in the heavier-duty conventional segment. Trucks with the lowest mileage will be snapped up first.