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Used Vehicle Prices Rise In Q1 2023 But Are Expected To Fall

With inventory improving, used vehicle prices seemed poised to cool off a tad this year, at least gradually. However, some models – like the Ford Maverick and Ford Bronco – continue to buck this trend and sell for more used than new, others – such as the Ford Mustang Mach-E – are becoming more attractive as used vehicle purchases, which was the case with most EVs in Q1 of 2023 as supply continues to improve. However, wholesale used vehicle prices increased by a rather substantial 8.6 percent in the first quarter, on average, according to the Manheim Used Vehicle Value Index (MUVVI).

Wholesale used vehicle prices have risen for four consecutive months to this point, gaining 1.5 percent month-over-month from February to March, though they still posted a 2.4 percent decrease year-over-year last month. However, it’s worth noting that while prices grew in the early part of March, those same values were below normal levels toward the latter part of the month, which seems to indicate that used vehicle prices will level out moving forward.

“For the first time in a long time, our midmonth Manheim Used Vehicle Value Index reading for the first half of March was actually way more positive than the final value,” said Cox Automotive Chief Economist Jonathan Smoke. “Based on full-month data and other key metrics, we definitely think conditions are weakening. March came in like a lion and went out like a lamb regarding wholesale vehicle values. After four months of seasonally adjusted gains and 11 straight weeks of price increases, March was a turning point. So, April will likely continue the downward trend we saw as March ended, and we expect to see some negative monthly moves ahead for the index.”

Coupled with the fact that used vehicle sales are expected to drop by six percent in March, it certainly seems like pricing will remain flat at the very least, though we must also consider that inventory still trails historical standards. The market closed out last month with a 38 days’ supply, which is down from 43 days at the end of February and is also nine days lower than March 2022, when it landed at 47 days.

We’ll have more on the state of the used vehicle market soon, so be sure and subscribe to Ford Authority for 24/7 Ford news coverage.

Brett's lost track of all the Fords he's owned over the years and how much he's spent modifying them, but his current money pits include an S550 Mustang and 13th gen F-150.

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Comment

  1. Ford500guy

    I was at Summit Ford in Beaver Dam Wisconsin last Friday and was checking out some Shelby Gt350 Mustangs on their lot and the prices were some what sketchy and where fast all over. The range in prices were $28,900-$58,000 for 2012-2018 which I thought was in the near normal range. Let’s hust see if they go down even more this year.

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