A Prius purchased earlier this year will command a resale price higher than the original sticker price.
“I look at the data a lot and it’s very rare — I’ve almost never seen this — to see the transaction price of a new vehicle rise after it has been sold,” says Tom Libby of J.D. Power & Associates. “It speaks to the huge imbalance between supply and demand of the Prius.”
The average price of a new 2008 Prius sold last month was $26,672. With Toyota unable to meet demand, the price of used 2008 models with about 8,000 miles on them was almost $1,300 more than retail at $27,945. Even more impressive, used 2007 models have been fetching an average of $26,396. That’s just $276 less than new 2008 vehicles.
The Prius plant in Japan is working at capacity to meet U.S. allocation of 15,000 cars a month — which is about what Toyota is selling now. “There is no excess inventory. That is not likely to change until Toyota’s new Mississippi plant comes online in 2010 and begins to assemble the Prius.” While it seems that this new Mississippi plan could not have come any sooner, only time will tell if Prius remains red-hot once Chevy’s Volt and Honda’s yet to be named 2009 hybrid come to market.