Stronger Demand Drives AWP Up In March

Pre-Owned Is Heating Up
Dealers around the country are reporting strong consumer demand for pre-owned vehicles. Average Wholesale Pricing (AWP) for March is up as a result, with notable price increases in almost every product category. Domestic Cruisers saw the biggest increase, up 11% over the prior three-month average, reversing last year’s softness as dealers embrace pre-owned as an avenue for drawing new riders into motorcycle ownership. The other major Street and Off-Road categories were up 4-6% over the prior three-month average.

Price To Book Ratios Elevated
The ratio of average auction prices to NADA clean wholesale rose in March, with Cruisers and ATVs trending slightly above historical norms. Current seasonality is showing a slight increase over last year’s seasonal trends due to demand in pre-owned. Pricing in April will likely be similar to March.

Wholesale Volume Flat Month-To-Month
The total number of units sold through all auction venues in March mirrored February. Wholesale volumes normally rise in March, but dealers are retaining more trade-ins than past years because they need the inventory, impacting the volumes available in the live and online auction lanes. The ratio of Domestic Cruisers was stable while more Sport Bikes and fewer Metric Cruisers and Off-Road units were sold. The overall average model age for units sold was similar to March 2016, reflecting a stable flow of repos and normal aging of new units.

Dealers Need Inventory
The number of website views vs. available auction inventory rose significantly in March. This is consistent with our most recent website survey of NPA dealers, where we asked the question, “How much inventory do you plan to stock this spring/summer?” Over 1,000 dealers responded and 88% said that they plan to stock the same or more pre-owned inventory than they did last year. While this may impact the volumes and pricing available in the auction lanes this spring, it bodes well for new riders entering the market and the plentiful opportunities in financing and future new unit sales that will result.

All data provided by National Powersport Auctions. For more information, please visit www.npauctions.com

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