Every year the car manufacturers proudly report "their" residual value giants, which the market research institute Bähr and Fess Forecast are commissioned to determine, especially for leasing companies, to calculate their leasing rates and also used by Autobild and Focus and in communication by the car manufacturers becomes. And the result of the residual value giants is to be evaluated as senselessly as the annual management and politician survey on the consumption of their company cars by the German environmental aid. At least for the car buyers to whom the car companies turn.
For their forecasts, the market researchers take into account specific criteria such as purchase price, vehicle properties, brand image, ratings in comparative tests and customer surveys, as well as overarching factors such as the quality of the competitors in the segment or general developments in the automotive market. What is not clear, however, is that these calculations are forecasts, i.e. estimates. Nobody can predict, let alone know, how the prices of used vehicles will develop in the next four years.
And if the company XY advertises that the estimated value for their model is still 54 percent after four years and another company has only reached 53,2 percent with their model, that has no relevance on the real used car market. Here, the state of care, negotiation skills, mileage and other things count more than any forecast from four years ago. After all, the institute judges today's new cars how much “probably” they should still be worth in four years. With all the care of the extrapolation, this is more a look into the crystal ball than a real calculation basis. A gasoline price crisis, changes in the legal framework and many others can ruin any forecast. Even that of a residual value giant.