Press release

Q1 used car transactions | May 2021

Auto Trader's commercial director, Ian Plummer, comments on the latest used car transactions from the SMMT

Commenting on the latest used car results, Auto Trader’s commercial director, Ian Plummer, said:

As you’d expect when comparing against a pre-pandemic January and February, 2021 looks to have had a slow start. However, given the context of closed showrooms, the performance of the used car market in Q1 is very positive and highlights the success retailers made of their buy online channels. Even factoring in the influence of COVID, which had only just started to be felt last year, March was incredibly strong and I doubt many within the industry would have ever believed that circa 90% of ‘normal’ sales volumes could have been achieved from online alone. There’s no mistaking, it is a huge achievement and testament to both the continuing high levels of car buying demand as well as the resilience and agility of retailers who’ve adapted their businesses so well.

 “As the data highlights, sales performance accelerated month-on-month, and following the reopening of physical forecourts on the 12th April, retailers have been able to build on their established digital processes by re-establishing the in-person benefits of seeing, touching, driving and even smelling the car they’ve seen on line and plan to buy. As a result, we have seen the trend continue into Q2, with most retailers reporting volumes above 2019 levels. This confident sales performance has been complemented with strong trading margins thanks to the exceptionally strong levels of price growth, which in April, increased 7.1% year-on-year.

 “Based on these metrics, along with wider economic factors, not least consumer confidence being bolstered by the lowering of the COVID-19 alert level and the return of indoor hospitality next week, we believe used car demand will continue apace for some time to come. However, that’s not to say the months ahead won’t have its challenges, particularly the chip shortage, which will place pressure on both new and used supply levels. It will be more important than ever therefore, that retailers get their stock in front of as many in-market buyers as possible, priced according to the live retail market, and available to buy according to their preference, whether in person at the dealership, or through the same buy online channels that served them so well during the pandemic.”

Great to see DealerDesk utilising our API to enable retailers to instantly publish and update their Auto Trader adverts without the traditional wait for old-fashioned stock feeds! https://t.co/RyCrCG1fl0
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Register for our next webinar where we’ll be exploring the latest in automotive logistics with special guest Thomas Mallet of Ecomotive Logistics. We’ll also be sharing our final step in addressing admin fees along with an update on the market 👉 https://t.co/GWNbgNrxVg https://t.co/SNIlt3nfcE
155,000 vehicles are underpriced on Auto Trader, meaning that there is a staggering amount of profit being missed out on by retailers. Find out more and what you can do to ensure you’re not leaving any profit on the table in this week’s tip of the week with @AndrewKorpela https://t.co/vj8Ux1Z2Jn
The popularity of electric vehicles continues to grow with the @Hyundai_UK IONIQ 5 being the most viewed new car on our platform over the last month. Will we see an electric vehicle top of the list next month and what needs to be done to sustain interest? Let us know👇 https://t.co/gNbRriDIiV
The @KiaUK Soul EV came out top among consumers looking for an EV that offers great value, taking the Best Value Electric Car at the Auto Trader New Car Awards 2021. https://t.co/LcVmx4kwKO
Demand for vans continues to increase with last month seeing the number of leads per new van on our marketplace grow a staggering 44% compared to August 2020, a new record. Overall van leads are also up by 30% vs 2020. https://t.co/6h2zt1D54r
On 22nd September we’ll complete our admin fees journey by adding the admin fee into the total advertised price and reflecting this in our valuations and price indicators. Find out more in our latest blog👇 https://t.co/ZVRpYhssAA
We're delighted to be supporting this year's @BenSupport4Auto Ben Ball taking place on the 8th Dec at the Roundhouse. There are now just a handful of tables left so be sure to book yours now to avoid missing out 👉https://t.co/6jC6ZaoEND https://t.co/zQCWD0JCRg
Our latest Monthly Market Intelligence report is now live. Check it out now to discover our latest new and used car market insights along a focus on EV pricing👉https://t.co/g8bPs1X6CE https://t.co/gB6Zh0p8rF

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