Preliminary data submitted to NADA from dealers and OEM’s indicates that both pricing and volume for Class 8 sleepers declined slightly in May. The average price of a sleeper tractor retailed in May should come in at just under $59,000, with mileage estimated at 507,000 and age at 75 months. Volume was just over 1800, for a decrease of approximately 12%.

Compared to April, May’s average pricing decreased by just over $1000 (or 1.8%). Mileage was almost identical, and age was 2 months older. The price and volume declines appear to be across-the-board, with little change to the proportion of trucks sold by mileage or model year. 

Year-over-year, May 2014 was $7250 (or 14.0%) higher on price, 26,600 (or 5.0%) lower on mileage, and identical in age. Obviously, pricing remains at an extremely high level. May’s result is the second-highest on record after April. 

We’ve noted previously that the market is currently the most “normal” it’s been since before the recession, with supply and demand less impacted by external factors such as impending emissions regulations, the Affordable Care Act, and general economic uncertainty. As such, we are likely witnessing “natural” depreciation based on healthy trading cycles of fleets confident in their business outlook. Our forecast of flat to mildly downward pricing remains in place. 

Stay tuned for final numbers – as well as results from the wholesale channel – later this month.