Subaru, Toyota and Porsche earn ‘overall brand’ nods from CBB Retained Value Awards


For the 10th anniversary of the Canadian Black Book Best Retained Value Awards, the company decided to add a little more to the program.

“After a decade of presenting these awards, we’ve established that it is necessary to recognize the brands that really excel in terms of retained value, across all their products,” CBB president Brad Rome said in a release.

As such, the 2017 instalment included 20 vehicle categories and for the first time, three overall brand winners.

The first ever Canadian Black Book Best Retained Value Overall Brand Award for car goes to Subaru; in truck/SUV the winner is Toyota; and in luxury the award goes to Porsche. The overall brand awards are decided upon by taking an average retained value over four years for every vehicle an OEM brand offers in the three categories. The highest average in each category gets the trophy.

“From a brand perspective, it is also worth noting that Toyota has come away for the 10th consecutive year as the winningest brand with nine total wins, including its ‘Overall Brand Truck & SUV’ victory,” CBB said.

The 2017 edition of the awards go to those 2013 models (four-year-old vehicles), which retained the highest percentage of MSRP in the 20 categories.

CBB said this has been a record-breaking year with Toyota FJ Cruiser holding 83 per cent of its original MSRP, the highest percentage of any winning vehicle ever.

Jeep Wrangler and Toyota Tacoma both held 82 per cent, which also broke the previous all-time high of 79 per cent posted last year by Wrangler.

It is the seventh consecutive win for Wrangler and the eighth straight for Tacoma and Toyota Tundra.

These record highs are reflected in the overall scope of used vehicle value performance for the year. When Canadian Black Book analyzed its data for this year’s awards, it said it concluded that on average across the board, wholesale values are up about one per cent from last year, with an average Canadian used vehicle retained value after four years of 50.6 per cent for 2017.

“These new records are truly astonishing achievements, considering the average vehicle today loses around 30 per cent of its value in the first year alone,” explained Brian Murphy, vice-president of research and editorial at CBB.

“My best advice to consumers is to consider those vehicles that have a history of strong value retention, to minimize the inescapable effects of depreciation on your bottom line,” adds Murphy.

In terms of the categories that depreciate least, in 2017 small pick-ups retained 73 per cent of MSRP over four years, as a group. Full-size Luxury SUVs are next at 60 per cent, then full-size pick-ups at 59 per cent and full-sized SUVs at 58 per cent.

“Canadian market demand and US demand for Canadian used trucks and SUVs are driving up their retained and future values. To get the most bang for your buck, it seems trucks and SUVs are currently the best bet,” Murphy said.

Sub-compact cars hold the least amount of their value at 37 per cent (according to 2017 Canadian Black Book data).

Also impacting the results this year is the rise in demand for long-term auto loans. According to J.D. Power’s monthly PIN Automotive Market Metrics report, 54 per cent of auto loans are 84 month terms or longer, with 43 per cent of all car deals involving a trade-in.

Murphy said the really concerning issue is that in 30 per cent of those deals, the vehicles are worth less than what is owed on it.

“Imagine after four years of owning a vehicle with only 30 per cent retained value, versus one of the better award-winning vehicles at 50 per cent, the loss would be $7,000 more in depreciation on a typical $35,000 car,” CBB said.

The weaker value retention will not only affect what the current car is worth at the end of the loan, but result in larger payments for the next car as the trade-in will be worth less.

“Depreciation is the single largest expense of owning a vehicle, more than gas, maintenance or insurance. Understanding your vehicle’s retained value is extremely important for anyone researching to buy, sell or trade-in any vehicle,” he said.