Press release

Auto Trader Retail Price Index | October 2019

Supply and demand factors are causing used diesels to hold their value better than petrol counterparts, says Auto Trader

  • The average used car price was £13,263 in October
  • Year-on-year like-for-like prices have declined by -3.2%
  • Year-on-year like-for-like prices of petrol vehicles dropped by - 4.6%

According to the Auto Trader Retail Price Index, which is based on circa 1.9 million price observations, the average price of a used car in October was £13,263, up from £13,096 in September.

However, after removing the impact of stock mix and changes in the types of vehicle entering or leaving the market, like-for-like advertised prices contracted -3.2% year-on-year. The overall decline was driven by a fall in diesel and petrol prices, which recorded a like-for-like dip of -0.7% and -4.6% respectively, with an average price of £14,421 and £11,872.

Supply and demand have been significant factors in affecting the disparity in the prices. The average sticker price of a nearly new diesel car, up to a year old, increased +1.8% like-for-like in October, whilst used petrol prices fell a significant -9.2%.  Currently[1], on the Auto Trader marketplace, there are just 51,336 used diesel cars registered from 2018, compared to 88,714 petrol of the same age - 73% more.

Electric prices remain buoyant

The average price of alternatively fuelled vehicles (AFVs), and in particular, pure electric, remain far higher than their traditionally fuelled counterparts. On a like-for-like basis the average price of an AFV increased +5.6% in October, whilst the rate of growth of electric vehicles (EV) was +22.1%; a respective average sticker price of £21,815 and £24,910. Although the cost of a used ultra-low emission car remains high, October marked the lowest rate of growth since May 2019 (+34.7%).

Karolina Edwards-Smadja, Director of Commercial Products at Auto Trader, explains, Although like-for-like prices continue to contract, the overall average price remains stable as a result of considerable change in the mix and profile of stock in the used car market, such as more expensive SUVs and low emission vehicles.

Whilst the rate of growth of low emission vehicles is slowing, albeit marginally, their average price continues to far outstrip their used ICE counterparts. As we’ve seen elsewhere in the market, prices are being heavily influenced by supply and demand. This month the Renault ZOE was the first pure EV to claim the title as both the fastest and second-fastest selling used car in the UK. We’ve also seen searches for pure EVs increase 46% on our marketplace since October 2018. Clearly, there is demand, however, with EVs representing just 1% of used cars aged up to three years on our marketplace, compared to 54% for petrol, it’s unlikely we’ll see average sticker prices decrease significantly any time soon.”   

Search volumes

Underpinning the growing demand for low emission vehicles, the percentage of fuel type searches attributed to AFVs increased to 8% in October, a record a high. Petrol cars remain the most popular, accounting for 48% of all fuel type searches, down from 49% in September. Searches for diesel cars remains flat at 43%.

[1] As of 19th November 2019

About the Auto Trader Retail Price Index

The Auto Trader Retail Price Index is published monthly and provides an overview of the latest price and search data from the Auto Trader marketplace. Auto Trader’s team of data scientists monitor over 1.9 million vehicles each day, including 90,000 vehicle updates and an average of 19,000 vehicles added or removed from Auto Trader. Coupled with data from circa 450,000 trade car listings every day, as well as additional retailer forecourts and website data (OEM, fleet and leasing disposal prices and pricing data from over 3,000 car dealership websites and data from major auction houses across the UK), ensuring the Index is an accurate reflection of the live retail market.

How did @UKVolkswagen's no.1 franchised retailer influence 66% of its new car sales on Auto Trader? Here's our new car product lead, David, to explain. For more information on how we can take your brand new cars out of hiding, just visit https://t.co/Zsb9UUlb4i https://t.co/IdIsrkydjx
Don't miss the next #ARNLive on 6th Feb. @perrysmotors' MD Darren Ardron, @HowardsGroup's Peter Haynes & AT's COO Catherine Faiers will join Al Clarke to share their views on the market & offer their tips on success in 2020. Register your place here: https://t.co/owxmLkC043 https://t.co/e7wFgJL1ef
We know first hand just how infectious @sharonashcroft's passion for #DiversityandInclusion is. What she & her team have achieved at @trustford is beyond impressive. If you're looking for inspiration on how to embed a more diverse culture into your business, look no further! https://t.co/BxW35GK1kl
In 2019 we saw circa 2.5 billion advert views of use and new cars on our marketplace. We've seen the most viewed used cars, but what was the most popular new car? The no.1 spot goes to the iconic Volkswagen Golf 🏆 You can find out more here: https://t.co/9YsOqbDeht https://t.co/mHOmWE5MbN
We're seeing some great pieces of coverage announcing the official launch of Dealer Auction yesterday. Find out how this independent company with the combined expertise of @CoxAutomotiveUK & Auto Trader is set to transform the wholesale market https://t.co/rHSBROgeFf
Based on advert views, German marques were the most popular used cars last year. The @BMW_UK 3 Series topped the list as the most viewed second hand car on our market place in 2019. Find out more here: https://t.co/9YsOqbDeht https://t.co/txZZXeyI7B
As part of its commitment to drive diversity in auto the NFDA recently held its 1st Drive my Career networking event for female apprentice technicians.Over 40 joined HR execs from across the industry to share thoughts on attracting female talent. Read more https://t.co/o4xuN1qJiG https://t.co/RXFr3s9ilX
Following details of last year's new car performance from the @SMMT why not take a look at 2019's most popular new cars on Auto Trader? Our report reveals what makes, models & body types received the most views, as well as the nation’s favourite features https://t.co/KX9m29AEM9 https://t.co/WOxFlpA5oF
"A slight uptick in sales may have closed the year off on a positive note, but 2019’s overall disappointing new car performance will come as little surprise to anyone on the front line." Read our response to the @SMMT's December new car registrations here https://t.co/r1B5OcDZLl https://t.co/lrj4nPMFJp
Consumers weren't only eating mince pies and watching the Queen's speech over the festive period...they were looking for their next car too. Don't miss out on the New Year rush; make sure your cars can be found on the UK's largest digital automotive marketplace. https://t.co/OkO8BkBF2g

Auto Trader Group plc
Registered in England (Company number: 09439967)

Auto Trader Limited
Registered in England and Wales (Company number: 03909628)

Registered address:

1 Tony Wilson Place
Manchester
M15 4FN
VAT number: GB 614 8918 20

Keep in touch

We use social media to speak to the UK’s largest car buying audience