Customers Move Toward Trucks, Large SUVs in July

The auto analyst firm AutoTrader is showing a trend toward large vehicles like trucks and SUVs in July. According to numbers in a press report out August 9, AutoTrader elaborates on internal studies that found customers are contemplating the purchases of work trucks, large SUVs and other gas-hungry rides as gas prices begin to subside from highs earlier this year.

The numbers from AutoTrader show that a variety of larger vehicles are doing well over the summer. Specifically, the new report finds month-to-month gains from June to July. AutoTrader cites trucks like the Dodge Ram 2500, the Chevy Silverado 2500, and the new Ford F-150 and F-250 models. Other vehicles that enjoyed sales increases include some of the Grand Jeep Cherokee models from Chrysler that are taking market share in the SUV market. Researchers also cite the Ford Explorer, a perennial large SUV favorite, and the Kia Sorrento crossover.

Another thing that the Atlanta-based auto analyst company found correlates with earlier reports from sources like Kelley Blue Book and consumer reporting groups. Basically, certified pre-owned vehicles are hot this year, which has meant inflated values for some used cars has continued to hold through the summer, affecting the ability of customers to pick up a used vehicle at a bargain price. AutoTrader gives its own list of possible reasons for the sticking of these high prices, including a decrease in the leasing market, lack of new car sales, and used car owners simply holding onto their vehicles for a longer period of time. It does seem that the higher pre-owned vehicle prices have sparked a kind of holding pattern, with buyers waiting to make the new investment in an updated vehicle, and potential sellers holding onto what they have. It remains to be seen whether a renewed supply of new cars from Japanese auto makers, and a tempting line of 2012 models due to be released this fall and into next year, will change the outlook for the used car market. Until then, buyers should make choices very carefully to avoid paying too much for a pre-owned vehicle, whether it’s from a dealer or in a private sale. Check out current blue book prices and know about your best options for financing a new or used vehicle to help your car purchase fit into your family budget.