The graph below reflects averaged sales reported to NADA of all sleeper tractors with under 1,000,000 miles from our auction and dealer wholesale sources.

I’ve recently mentioned that the steady upward price trend in the wholesale markets of the past two years may be flattening out. Observation of price and mileage data strongly suggests that price resistance becomes strong as mileage nears the 650K mark.

With over 90% of our September wholesale (auction and dealer) data received, we see that this trend continues. Mileage and price again moved in opposite directions.

Statistically, the correlation between price and mileage since January, 2011 is -0.91. This is a strong negative relationship, and is convincing evidence that price is returning to its traditional inverse relationship with mileage (as opposed to its independent upward movement prior to January).

The takeaway? It’s becoming pretty obvious that the 650,000 mile mark is a good rule of thumb for when to expect a truck to start losing value.

One big thing to remember – this rule of thumb only applies to the wholesale markets. The retail market is still a completely different animal, with pricing still increasing in the face of higher mileage. I’ll post preliminary results from the retail side later this week.