The retail sleeper market turned in an unexpectedly strong performance in July, with depreciation for individual trucks essentially nonexistent despite the continuing increased supply. This ongoing market shift favoring 2-5 year-old trucks pushed our universal average to a new all-time record.

Specifically, the average sleeper tractor retailed in July brought $60,767, had 503,884 miles, and was 74 months old. Compared to last month, pricing was up $3629 (or 6.4%), mileage was down 17,702 (or 3.4%), and age was 4 months younger. Year-over-year, this month’s pricing was $8048 (or 15.3%) higher, mileage was 31,764 (or 5.9%) lower, and age was 3 months younger.

Drilling down into mileage range and model year, pricing was generally up month-over-month, and up substantially year-over-year. As we’ve been stating since the first quarter, the market is absorbing an increased supply of late-model sleeper tractors. These trucks represent the back-end result of the return to shorter trade cycles post-recession, as well as expansion of the nation’s fleet. Demand for lower-mileage iron (which we now roughly define as under 500,000 miles) remains strong enough to keep depreciation to a minimum despite the increased supply.

By every measure, trucks are bringing more money this year than they did last year. July was simply a hot month for sleeper tractors.

Stay tuned for additional detail in the September edition of Guidelines, available the second week of September.