Used vehicle prices are down for 2013, and some experts are predicting they'll go even lower before the end of the year — but not for pickup trucks. This could be good news for those who already have a good pickup (likely with a V-8) and want to get an inexpensive used compact car for those long drives when you don't need to haul or tow something.
According to the Detroit News, the average price of a 3-year-old vehicle between the months of April and June this year fell by 4 percent and, depending on the type of vehicle it is, it could fall even more by yearend. Why? New-car sales are picking up, so there are more used cars flowing into the marketplace. More used vehicles on dealer lots mean more competition and falling used-vehicle prices.
Unfortunately, this news is a double-edged sword for truck lovers. Right now there is strong demand for new pickup trucks, as represented in the consistently climbing month-over-month full-size pickup sales numbers, which means more buyers are selling their older models. We say "unfortunately" because demand for pickups is still pretty high, so the average transaction price for used pickups (less than 5 years old) is pretty strong.Those prices are not falling like they are in the used compact car and hybrid car segments — some as much as 15 and 20 percent over last year's pricing.
What does this mean for us? If you're looking for a used pickup truck, prices are not likely to fall anytime soon. But if you have a pickup you're happy with, you might want to consider purchasing a small, fuel-efficient car (assuming you can stomach driving one of them) for longer trips where fuel economy matters.