December’s New Car Sales Point to Good News for Those Selling Used



New car sales were robust across most U.S. marketed brands last month, aided by increased consumer confidence, lower gas prices and dealerships eager to continue record-setting sales streaks. In their most recent January Guidelines report, NADA Used Car Guide analysts observed that while the 11 percent monthly sales increase meant good deals could be had for the new car buyer, the used vehicle market witnessed a sobering shot of activity.

“For the first time in 20 years, wholesale auction prices of used vehicles actually increased during December,” according to Jonathan Banks, executive analyst for NADA Used Car Guide. Banks also stated, “The 0.3 percent increase during the month is significant…since the average price for December the last 10 years has seen a 1.4 percent drop.”

Due to strong market sales, consumers looking to buy used in the first three months of 2015 will find prices similar to―if not lower than―what they would have paid in the first quarter of 2014.

The pricing in the used market is not solely based on auction prices. Forthcoming tax refund checks, lower gas prices, and seasonality all help to contribute to the market price.

With dealerships eager for quality used trade-ins, NADA Used Car Guide analysts expect new car shoppers to be positioned well on purchasing trips, as dealers are eager for quality used trade-ins. To aid consumers in obtaining the car of their choice, manufacturers look to continue to grow their incentive spending. In December, manufacturers averaged just under $3,000 in the sale-moving tactic, making it the 23rd consecutive month incentives grew.

The National Automobile Dealer Association’s first quarter price forecast sees prices rising between 1.5 to 2.5 percent higher than they were in December.

The full report listing all values and trends can be downloaded for free on the NADA Used Car Guide website at Additionally, a video version of the Guidelines report can be viewed on YouTube at

About the NADA Used Car Guide
Since 1933, NADA Used Car Guide has earned its reputation as the leading provider of vehicle valuation products, services and information to businesses throughout the United States and worldwide. NADA’s editorial team collects and analyzes over 1 million combined automotive and truck wholesale and retail transactions per month. Its guidebooks, auction data, analysis and data solutions offer automotive/truck, finance, insurance and government professionals the timely information and reliable solutions they need to make better business decisions. Visit to learn more.

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