3 Reasons to Buy Pre-Owned Refrigerated Trucks Now

Fleet Management, Food & Beverage, Vehicle Sales
September 13, 2017

So far in 2017, the demand for refrigerated trucks has been increasing. In mid-May, the national average spot market rate for refrigerated trucks moved higher, according to DATTM Trendlines, all while load-to-ratio and per-mile metrics sailed along at healthy levels. What do these numbers tell us? Clearly, business opportunities for these specialized trucks are out there for you.

But keep this in mind: Punishing peak-season schedules and other factors can push your old faithful refrigerated truck past its limit, costing you the chance to capitalize on these opportunities. When it’s time to retire one refrigerated truck and find a replacement, buying a certified pre-owned model is a great choice—for both lower cost and higher value.

Here are three reasons to buy pre-owned refrigerated trucks, vans, and trailers right now:

  1. The cold-chain transportation market is growing: FoodLogistics.com analyzed a recent report by Research and Markets, saying, “The refrigerated transportation market in the U.S. will grow at a compound annual growth rate of 12.44 percent from 2014 to 2019.” That’s a sizable opportunity for your business.

FoodLogistics.com added that, “The need for product-specific refrigerated vehicles is one of the major trends emerging in this market. End-users need product-specific refrigerated vehicles that can prevent food contamination by avoiding cross-product transportation.” Factors behind their outlook include the rise of organic foods, and increasing demand for frozen convenience foods.

 The Takeaway: U.S. demand for refrigerated trucks, vans, and trailers is predicted to rise for at least the next three years. Buying certified pre-owned is a cost-effective way to get maximum profit from this trend.

  1. Online ordering keeps rising, and so do the deliveries. InternetRetailer.com, among many other reliable sources, is monitoring the boom in online ordering. In Forrester’s U.S. Cross-Channel Retail Forecast, 2015 To 2020, InternetRetailer.com said “…an additional 26 million shoppers will be both browsing and buying from retail sites by the end of this decade, reaching 270 million, as bigger smartphones and faster wireless networks make it easier for consumers to use the Internet to shop on their phones. Forrester says 244 million consumers browsed or bought online in 2015.” 

The Takeaway: Online ordering from food, beverage and other retailers of perishable items is exploding. Pre-owned refrigerated trucks offer excellent return-on-investment for fleets that make online deliveries.

  1. It’s a buyer’s market. Trucks.com has reported that current economics make pre-owned trucks (especially refrigerated trucks) an attractive option right now. Steve Tam, vice president of the commercial vehicle sector for ACT, told Trucks.com, “In essence, we have too many new trucks chasing too little freight — companies were adding trucks to their fleets and manufacturers were continuing to build while freight growth was elusive. There’s just a higher percentage of people coming down off the fence on the side of [pre-owned] trucks.”

Dealers have been reporting more customer traffic for deals on pre-owned refrigerated trucks, and prices are reasonable. Trucks.com writes, “[Pre-owned] trucks are being sold more cheaply than in the past,” and ACT’s Tam noted that in terms of pre-owned truck sales, “the overall trend is on an upward trek.”
The Takeaway: Certain drifts in freight markets have caused fleets to forego new refrigerated trucks, vans, and trailers, and to choose certified pre-owned instead. Prices are lower, and sales are on the rise.

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