The market for Planetary Vehicles in New Eden showed massive movement this week as a CCP Big Dumb Object revealed that the biggest single source of planetary vehicles in New Eden had stopped working since the start of the month.
No doubt all the production line workers are out joyriding in their shiny new noctii.
You see, Planetary Vehicles was one of the planet products that was most difficult to make, requiring Supertensile Plastics, Miniature Electronics and Mechanical Parts - made more expensive by the fact that Mechanical parts are in demand as a POS fuel and for making robotics. However there was never any need to do this because like most commodities that existed prior to the introduction of PI there were stockpiles to be eaten through first, but unlike other commodities the stockpiles showed no sign of depletion over the last 6 months. While many of the commodities were still dropped in small amounts by various mission structures there was one specific mission which would drop enough vehicles for a thousand joyriders, so with such an abundant supply, relatively low usage and complex production chain only a moron would spend time making them.
Now, that mission no longer drops these, and CCP has confirmed this is intentional the speculators have been out in force buying them up all over the cluster. The prices have gone from a few thousand to about thirty thousand isk, but this is still less than half the price you would expect based upon the cost of the input materials so while it's a big jump in cost for the planet industrialists it's still a bargain compared to producing them yourself.
However, I did some checking and managed to find a few missions that I knew dropped PI loot, and I can confirm that this loot nerf isn't just removing one giant drop from one mission, but it's a more pervasive change that may have removed all PI drops from missions. So while everyone has been panic buying Planetary Vehicles there has also been a lesser rush for Guidance Systems.
I think this may be backwards to be honest, Guidance systems are used in TII drone production in addition to it's place in PI production, so the net demand may be higer in the long run.
Not that it matters too much to me, I have large, cheap stocks of both ready to use/sell when the time comes.