Used car transactions | Q1 2023
Auto Trader's response to the latest used car sales data
Ian Plummer, Auto Trader’s Commercial Director, said: “Given the stream of negative headlines, for many people the outlook for 2023 didn’t look promising. But against a backdrop of political and economic uncertainty, the used car market has gone from strength-to-strength this year, fuelled by very robust levels of consumer demand. On our marketplace we saw a record 238 million visits in Q1, increasing 17% on 2022.
“The market’s carrying some great momentum with it, and our outlook for the rest of the year remains confident, but there’s no doubt that sales growth is being hampered by the dearth of new car sales over the course of the pandemic. This massive shortfall of would be used car stock isn’t only limiting sales potential, but it’s also driving most used car prices up – in April average values accelerated at their fastest rate in 17 months. With no imminent change in sight to the current levels of either demand or supply, anyone hoping for a softening in prices anytime soon will be very disappointed.
“Despite the positive uptick in sales, our data shows the used EV market isn’t where it needs to be if we’re to reach the government’s 2030 ambitions. The success of the second-hand electric market will be fundamental to mass adoption. As a result of surging levels of supply, prices are falling, down over 18% in April on 2022, but more needs to be done to give people the confidence to get behind the wheel of a used EV. It should help considerably, if, as we hope, the government adopts battery health monitors in all vehicles, along with considering our wider support measures, including reducing VAT on used EVs and cutting VAT on public chargers.”
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