New-car buyers have a lot of reasons to care about used-car prices. For starters, there’s the value of your trade-in, assuming you have a trade-in and you’re not coming out of a lease.
According to the used-car auction firm ADESA Inc., Carmel, Ind., in April the average used-vehicle wholesale price was $10,096, down 4.5 percent from a year earlier. That number hit a recent peak in March 2012 at $10,625, so the current level still isn’t bad. Average used-car prices bottomed out at an average of $8,628 in October 2008, according to ADESA data.
In an uncertain world, one thing that’s completely predictable is how many 3-year-old used cars there will be, three years from now. The answer is, the number of new cars being built today.