Kontos: Wholesale Prices Remain High

By Staff Writer September 03, 2021

In July, for the second month in a row, average wholesale used vehicle prices fell on a month-over-month basis and appear to have moderated to what are still historically high levels well into August, according to KAR Global Chief Economist Tom Kontos.

The July/August Kontos Kommentary shows retail used vehicle sales and CPO sales have also moderated from their spring peaks but remain at high levels

According to KAR Global Analytical Services’ monthly analysis of wholesale used vehicle prices by vehicle model class, wholesale prices in July averaged $14,250 — down 2.7% compared to June, up 6.5% relative to July 2020, and up 24.4% compared to pre-COVID/July 2019 as seen in the table below. 

Wholesale Used Vehicle Price Trends


All segments except full-size vans and compact pickups, which are small segments volume-wise, showed month-over-month declines in average prices.

When holding constant for sale type, model-year-age, mileage, and model class segment — using criteria that characterize off-lease units — prices in July were up significantly versus July 2020 and July 2019 for both midsize cars and midsize SUV/CUVs, as seen in the following table:


Fleet/Lease Sales of Three-MY-Old Units w/36K-45K miles


Model Class

Average Prices

Y/Y % Variance




 vs 2020

 vs 2019

 Midsize Car







Midsize SUV/CUV

 $28,946  $22,162  $21,525  30.6%  34.5%
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Last modified on Friday, 10 September 2021 18:21