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It’s all the fault of the recession. In the late norties nobody was buying new vans, so now you can’t find a used one

USED van buyers are finding it hard to find large panel vans for their businesses.

Van reseller Manheim says that a ‘chronic lack’ of larger panel vans in the market is driving buyers into car derived vans and smaller panel vans instead.

The large panel van is the traditional workhorse of business van users. During the recession, new van sales collapsed and the used van market is now seeing the consequences in a ‘perfect storm’ of growing demand as business recovers and shrinking supply as the dip in 5 year old stock takes its toll.

The upshot is that used van values, and especially panel van values, continue to rise at auction with prices peaking at £5297 in May though the quality of the vans improved slightly with average age dropping from 62 to 61 months, and mileage reducing from 84,062 to 84,510.

The average price of a car derived van in May was £3435 – down £64 against April, but against a mileage rise from 70,128 to 71,205.

Small panel vans saw the biggest rise in used van values – up by 8.5% to £4811, helped by a hefty cut in average mileage from 87,925 to 78,908.

Matthew Davock, head of vans at Manheim, commented: “2014 has seen a continuation of the record levels of demand in the used van market.

“We have seen two months of significant year on year increases in van de-fleets; these vans have been snapped up by eager buyers looking to secure price range quality stock.”

“The mix of vans has changed over the past twelve months, with many more car-derived and small panels vans coming up for sale. Conversely, the lower volumes of larger panel vans we’re seeing is, we believe, driving a shift in buyer behaviour toward smaller vehicles.”

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