Press release

Most viewed new and used cars 2019

German marques take the top spots as Auto Trader reveals the UK's most popular new and used cars of 2019

  • VW Golf takes the title of the UK’s most popular new car model for the second year whilst the BMW 3 Series is the most popular used car based on advert views
  • Audi is the public’s most desirable brand for new cars, but BMW is the favourite amongst used car buyers

The latest data from Auto Trader, the UK’s largest digital automotive marketplace for new and used cars, found that 2019’s most popular cars were dominated by German marques. Analysis of over two and a half billion advert views on its marketplace last year revealed that the Volkswagen Golf was the most popular new car model, whilst the BMW 3 Series topped the list as the most viewed used car.

Most viewed cars 2019 | Make and model

New

Used

1. Volkswagen Golf

1. BMW 3 Series

2. Ford Focus

2. Volkswagen Golf

3. Ford Fiesta

3.Mercedes-Benz C Class

4. Land Rover Range Rover

4. BMW 1 Series

5. Land Rover Range Rover Sport

5. Ford Focus

6. BMW 3 Series

6. Ford Fiesta

7. Mercedes-Benz A Class

7.Mercedes-Benz E- Class

8. Land Rover Range Rover Evoque

8. Audi A3

9. Volkswagen Polo

9. BMW 5 Series

10. Mercedes-Benz C Class

10. Vauxhall Corsa

In terms of the overall most popular brands, it was no surprise that the premium German marques triumphed. In the new car corner, the most viewed brand in 2019 was Audi, followed by BMW and Volkswagen, whilst in the used car corner the most popular was BMW, followed by Audi, and Mercedes-Benz.

Commenting on the findings, Auto Trader’s commercial director, Ian Plummer, said: “Though there are certainly some notable exceptions, most volume brands had another challenging year in 2019 and, as a whole, have not kept to the same pace as the premium brands for several years now. When it comes to the most popular cars on our marketplace in 2019, the premium German brands dominate.  Their success has been fuelled by strong residual values that help them benefit from the continuing dominance of finance sales (accounting for more than nine in 10 new and nearly four in 10 used car sales), making these more expensive models increasingly more accessible to a broader range of car buyers. As such, it’ll be interesting to see how well the volume brands will be able to develop their own residual values over the medium-long term to sustainably deliver the sales growth they need.”

The scale and depth of its data capabilities means Auto Trader can analyse the numbers at a more granular level, including fuel type. With searches of alternatively fuelled vehicles (AFV) increasing by 38% between December 2018 and December 2019[1] and pure electric vehicles (EV) surging 78% during the same period it’s clear the appetite for low-emission cars is growing.

Analysis of the ad view data show that interest in brand new EVs is starting to overtake that for petrol hybrids, with the all-electric Audi E-Tron receiving 7% more views in 2019, compared to the most popular new hybrid, the Toyota Corolla. However, in the used market, the most popular used EV, the Tesla Model S, has some way to go if it’s to catch the most viewed hybrid, the Toyota Prius, which received 12% more ad views than the Tesla last year.

Plummer continued: “The fact the most popular brand new EVs are receiving more views than their petrol-hybrid counterparts could be attributed to a number of factors, not least the huge advancements in range capabilities, performance and stylings, but also improvements to infrastructure. Coupled with the cut in available grants for plug-in hybrids, these have all resulted in a significant step-change in consumer attitudes towards buying a new electric. It’s curious to see that this is yet to translate to the used market, where concerns about battery life-spans and high price tags continue to push second-hand buyers towards more tried and tested hybrids which remain very good value.”

[1] Total number of AFV searches in December 2018 versus December 2019

This week saw the highest level of new electric car advert views on Auto Trader since the 2030 ban on the sale of new petrol & diesel vehicles was announced, with almost 14% of all new car advert views being for an electric car last Thursday. Will we see this trend continue? https://t.co/sczaVjTeoV
It’s all hands on deck for this week’s tip of the week where @AndrewKorpela shares some best practises to help you keep your forecourt full and ensure the stock on your forecourt is presented in the best possible way. https://t.co/6Lsf00QIRM
In our next webinar, our CEO Nathan Coe joins us to answer the question “Are Auto Trader Buying Cars?” Register now and join us live to find out what he has to say along with all our latest market updates and insights 👉https://t.co/METGnTcqB8 https://t.co/UT1hMfHtqo
The number of people viewing electric vehicles on our platform continues to grow and right now it is the @Tesla Model S that is attracting more advert views than any other electric vehicle on our platform. https://t.co/Q0c8imqzCP
The number of people viewing electric vehicles on our platform continues to grow and right now it is the @Tesla Model S that is attracting more advert views than any other electric vehicle on our platform. https://t.co/Q0c8imqzCP
When it comes to city driving, the @renault_uk Captur came out top at the Auto Trader New Car Awards 2021, winning the Best Car for City Drivers award. https://t.co/FrHpVBTLvb
Buyers looking at petrol and diesel vehicles are increasingly considering an electric vehicle. But considerations are comparatively low when we look at those considering a plug-in hybrid, with 40.6% of such buyers considering an electric vehicle. https://t.co/cyfmYVw5xk
Wondering what's next for car dealers now that restrictions have been eased? Check out last week's webinar to find out what you can expect over the coming months and how to prepare👉 https://t.co/bGqkGxArP3 https://t.co/79L9B623fs
How are our vehicle valuations calculated? @nchking has the answer, and shares exactly how our award winning valuations are calculated entirely by data. https://t.co/u0HIGWAXot
Fantastic to see our winners getting the recognition they deserve! https://t.co/1vrF4Tjo2e

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