Fierce Competition Predicted For Used Truck Industry

June 08, 1999

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Competition in the used truck industry will only grow, according to the national sales manager of used trucks for Freightliner Market Development Corp.
Wafik Elsanadi made his predictions in remarks to the Truck Blue Book Used Truck Seminar in Nashville, TN, June 4.
Elsanadi says competition will become fiercer due to five factors:
· Increasing OEM participation in the used truck market will lead to more distribution channels. Ideally, Freightliner wants its trucks to only be handled by Freightliner outlets, and Sterlings by Sterling-only outlets.
· Increased emphasis will be placed on value-added services, such as warranties, insurance, business education programs, load matching and compliance services.
· Advanced sales skills will be required of used truck salespeople due to the advancing technology and complexity of trucks. Customers will need more help to understand the equipment, and will search out the most knowledgeable salespeople.
· The Internet is being used by retail used truck buyers as an investigative and research tool to find just the right spec'd truck and to schedule an in-person appointment and test drive. Wholesalers could gain the most from the Internet, perhaps even making it the preferred sales channel, and will show photos of trucks and video clips on demand.
· Auctions will grow as used truck volumes increase. Some big auto auctions are looking into getting into the heavy truck business. If they enter the marketplace, auctions will have to more clearly differentiate their services and add more services.

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