Press release

New car registrations | April 2020

Ian Plummer, Auto Trader's Commercial Director, shares his views on the latest new car registrations from the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT)

“With retailers forced to close the doors to their physical forecourts, it’ll come as no surprise to anyone to see just how dramatic an impact it’s had on the new car market. Some brands have been able to sell remotely, but uncertainty in the government’s guidelines or a lack of the required infrastructure to operate home delivery in a safe way, has limited it to all but a handful of retailers.

“Whilst the market is down significantly, our data does point to a market that has been paused, rather than stopped, and ready to return to health quickly once the restrictions have been lifted. Whilst traffic to our platforms has fallen, we’re still seeing circa 1 million visits every day. What’s more, our research of over 3,000 consumers conducted last week showed that only 2% have been put off from buying a new vehicle. In fact, 25% said they wanted to buy a vehicle as soon as they could, and 57% said they’d still buy in 2020.

“The same research showed that 48% public transport users would be less likely to use it as a result of social distancing anxieties, and for the same reason, 56% of driving licence holders who don’t currently own a vehicle would now consider buying one. It highlights the need for retailers to use this period to plan how they can implement measures that seek to reassure potential car buyers they can purchase a car safely. We’re confident the demand is there, but unless retailers are retail ready for when the restrictions lift, they’ll find themselves at a huge disadvantage to those that are. Something few can afford at such a challenging time.

“With potentially more people behind the wheel, there’s a chance for the industry to accelerate the adoption of low emission vehicles. However, it’ll be essential for manufacturers to push more EVs into their UK networks along with greater financial incentives. Discussions have already started in Germany and France, for example, into the possible introduction of scrappage schemes favouring low CO2 cars and EVs. Otherwise consumers will stick to what they know. It’ll be a wasted opportunity to drive positive change in the market and will push the government’s 2035 emissions ambitions further out of reach.”

As #cardealers re-opened their showrooms on Monday we saw the highest day for new car leads since we launched the new car platform. To find out more about #advertising your #newcars with us, email brandnew@autotrader.co.uk https://t.co/ke5xKYmGME
That's it for this week's webinar. Thanks to our guest @mikejonesase for joining us once again and be sure to register for next week's webinar at https://t.co/NiN0Kwzkit https://t.co/9pwRYEnOJa
Question for @MarcThornboroug - How can I manage sales in the current scenario?
Now over to Q&A - first question around what happens if I include admin prices in the full advertised price?
Update on the self-employed scheme – applications for a second grant to open in August. Allows you to claim 70% of average monthly trading profits, capped at £6,570
Great summary from @ASE_Global on what government support is currently available https://t.co/dg4Ge6nVi7
Delighted to welcome @mikejonesase from @ASE_Global back to provide the latest update on the #furlough scheme and #selfemployed income support scheme
When it comes to where to source your stock - @MarcThornboroug highlights that @dealerauction1 is offering a free 3-month subscription for new customers (even if you've had a free trial before). Request a call back and one of our account managers will get in touch to help you!
We've once again dusted off @MarcThornboroug to talk about restocking your forecourt to ensure you are #RetailReady
Great advice from @stuart_trader - be sure to reorganise your back end to cope with the surge in leads. A missed call could be a missed sale!

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