After an extremely unusual January in which a very young, low-mileage mix of trucks sold through wholesale channels, February’s results returned closer to the trend in most measures. The average sleeper tractor sold at auction or dealer-to-dealer in February brought $31,691, had 723,465 miles, and was 89 months old.

Month-over-month, February’s pricing was $6858 (or 17.8%) lower than January’s. Mileage was 99,621 (or 13.8%) higher, and age was 17 months older. As we stated, January was an outlier, with severe weather likely causing buyers to snap up only the most desirable iron. See graph below for detail.

Interest in high-mileage trucks was considerably higher this month. The percentage of sleepers sold with over 600,000 miles returned to a more typical 69%, which happens to match the CY2013 average exactly. Compare this result to January’s 47%. Not only that, but trucks in our highest mileage band (900-999K) were the top sellers this month. 

Currently, it looks like the wholesale market is somewhat split, with interest concentrated in the under-500K and over-700K segments. We expect this trend to smooth out a bit in upcoming months, but it is logical that demand will remain strong for low-mileage trucks. By the same token, there will always be some degree of a market for low-priced, high-mileage trucks. See graph below for detail.

In terms of age, model-year 2007 was again the top seller, regaining this position after giving it up for one month to 2011’s. Although 2007’s generally come with high mileage – averaging 867,710 year-to-date – their low price ($17,827 on average) and lack of DPF’s keep them a popular target. As for 2011’s, trucks of that vintage will continue to make a larger impact as they return off trade. 

Expect upcoming months to look similar.