Editor’s Notebook: Looking at Performance Numbers from Top Dealer Groups

By Jon LeSage, Edi­tor, Used Car Mar­ket Reports

Here’s a few sig­nif­i­cant remar­ket­ing news devel­op­ments dur­ing the past week:

  • Car­Max dom­i­nat­ed the retail used vehi­cle space for deal­er­ship groups, with sub­stan­tial growth in 2014 – 526,929 used units sold last year ver­sus No. 2, Auto­Na­tion, at 214,910 sold. Car­Max saw an increase of near­ly 80,000 used units sold last year over 2013. Its used retail rev­enue grew from $8.7B in 2013 to $10.4B in 2014.
  • Man­heim chief econ­o­mist Tom Webb found a very impres­sive num­ber while crunch­ing finan­cial reports from the sev­en pub­licly trad­ed deal­er­ship groups – Car­Max, Auto­Na­tion, Penske Auto­mo­tive Group, Son­ic Auto­mo­tive, Group 1 Auto­mo­tive, Asbury Auto­mo­tive Group, and Lithia Motors. Look­ing at Q1 2015 reports, Webb found that these com­pa­nies had a same-store increase in retail used-unit deliv­er­ies for the 23rd con­sec­u­tive quar­ter.
  • NextGear Cap­i­tal made two announce­ments over the past week on alliances with Cox Auto­mo­tive part­ners: GO Finan­cial and NextGear Cap­i­tal launched their “Gear Up and GO” rebate pro­gram. This new pro­mo­tion pro­vides deal­ers the oppor­tu­ni­ty to earn a $100 cred­it for each eli­gi­ble vehi­cle that is floor planned with NextGear Cap­i­tal and sold to a con­sumer via GO financ­ing. Also, NextGear has added Kel­ley Blue Book Val­ues to its myNextGear web and mobile appli­ca­tions. As a result of this inte­gra­tion between the two Cox Auto­mo­tive busi­ness units, NextGear Cap­i­tal cus­tomers can now receive cur­rent mar­ket-reflec­tive val­ues at no addi­tion­al cost for new and used vehi­cles. Through these eval­u­a­tion tools, deal­ers now have access to entry-lev­el data to help them make informed pur­chas­ing and sell­ing deci­sions from either the com­fort of their office or on the go.
  • Tes­la Motors has launched a cer­ti­fied pre-owned (CPO) web­site page, but it might be a bit ear­ly in the process to see much inven­to­ry there. Dur­ing a recent media con­fer­ence call, Kel­ley Blue Book’s Alec Gutier­rez said that with cur­rent month­ly sales of the Mod­el S in the 1,500 to 1,700 range, it’s still ear­ly in the remar­ket­ing process. It does make sense to get start­ed now, though, he said. “They want to have enough cer­ti­fied pre-owned inven­to­ry out there to help give con­sumers some­thing in between the Mod­el 3, when­ev­er that arrives, and the full blown Mod­el S or Mod­el X, when that arrives,” Gutier­rez said. “So to me, it’s a good play, but a long-term strat­e­gy for sure.”
  • Cer­ti­fied pre-owned (CPO) sales in April beat year-ago fig­ures by more than 11% and March 2015 sales by 3.4%. The dai­ly sell­ing rate for CPO sales in April was 8,268, up from 7,427 one year ear­li­er. Land Rover and Porsche enjoyed record-high CPO sales.
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