Luxury vehicles take the biggest depreciation hits on the used-car market, while prices on most light-truck models stay strong, according to a year-to-year analysis.

“All cars lose value over time, and it seems luxury vehicles do so fastest,” says Langley Steinert, founder and CEO of CarGurus, an automotive shopping and research website company that did the study.

With a few exceptions, premium cars show the most significant year-over-year price drops, including BMW, Mercedes-Benz, Audi and Cadillac models.

The ’12 Chevrolet Equinox and ’10 BMW 3 Series lead the loser-cruiser list.

Of the trucks and SUVs that dominate the highest-value top-10 roster, eight actually flexed year-over-year price increases.

The study highlights extreme variances in value changes among different models.

The median value change from 2013 to 2014 for vehicles in the study is -9.8%. Inflation-adjusted changes range from -18.9% to 3.4%.

Biggest Value Losers:

  1. ’12 Chevrolet Equinox (-18.9%)
  2. ’10 BMW 3 Series (-17.5%)
  3. ’12 Mercedes-Benz E-Class (-17.4%)
  4. ’09 Nissan Altima (-16.5%)
  5. [tie] ’08 Volvo XC90 (-16.3%); ’08 BMW 5 Series (-16.3%); ’09 BMW 5 Series (16.3%).
  6. ’09 BMW 3 Series (-16.2%)
  7. ’09 Audi A-4 (-15.8%)
  8. ’08 Volkswagen Passat (-15.7%)
  9. [tie] ’09 Cadillac STS (-15.6%); ’09 BMW X5 (-15.6%)
  10. ’12 Cadillac SRX (-15.5%)

Biggest Value Retainers:

  1. ’12 Ram 1500 (3.4%)
  2. ’12  Nissan Titan (2.2%)
  3. ’12 Dodge Charger (1%)
  4. ’12 Ford F-150 (.9%)
  5. ’12 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 (.7%)
  6. ’12 Jeep Liberty (.5%)
  7. ’12 Ram 2500 (.2%)
  8. ’08 Dodge Ram 2500 (.1%)
  9. ’12 Jeep Wrangler (-.6%)
  10. ’12 Chevrolet Tahoe (-.8%)

No automaker wants its products on a highest-depreciation list, but Steinert says those vehicles offer good deals for bargain hunters, especially ones with upscale tastes. “If you are shopping for a luxury car, there are substantial savings to be found by buying used.”

It’s a different story with trucks. “Recent demand has kept truck prices high, and the savings you might expect by buying a used truck will be much harder to find.”

Here’s how CarGurus did the study:

It first analyzed average prices for used-car models from ’08 through ’12 for which there were at least 400 vehicles in inventory at dealerships nationwide.

The company then calculated the percentage price change between the average price for the car in March 2013 and March 2014, applying a 1.1% annual inflation rate, with the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics as the source.

Analysts looked at 577 different year/models and more than 1.5 million individual listings.

sfinlay@wardsauto.com