Press release

Retailers warned that part-ex wobbles could sour record September

Auto Trader says new car market is ‘firmly on track’ for a record 450,000 units.

  • 1.2 million consumer valuations will take place on autotrader.co.uk in September
  • Nearly one in five deals threatened by part exchange negotiation break-down

Half way through the month, and the new car market looks to be on track for a record September tally of 450,000 units. Experts at Auto Trader are also forecasting a record volume of consumer valuations via its site, with more than 1.2 million taking place in the month.

But while signs look positive, the company has warned of research which suggests a significant proportion of showroom deals could break down during part exchange negotiations. While nine in ten walk-in buyers have an expectation of what their part-ex is worth, 18% of deals fall through at the part-ex negotiation stage.

“September is gearing up to be another bumper plate change month for retailers,” commented Karolina Edwards-Smajda. “But it is surprising that so many deals break down in the showroom, often as a consequence of difficulties with price negotiations. Unrealistic expectations about the value of a part exchange are cited by retailers as one of the most common reasons for this failure.

“We are currently working on a product that could help buyers and sellers start a conversation on the same page. If we can help facilitate a dialogue on part exchange values earlier in the process, when buyers are seeking information online, then we could help both parties align before the visit to the showroom. That could significantly reduce the haggle-hassle factor on the forecourt and seal more deals.”

Consumers have myriad sources with which to value their cars today, but more than a million a month are now being undertaken via Auto Trader, the country’s largest online marketplace for buying and selling new and used cars. Valuations are based on a retail-back approach which means the starting point is what cars are actually selling for on forecourts throughout the UK. These are then adjusted for trade to ensure buyers get a fair price – and that retailers make a fair profit.

Notes to Editors:

Auto Trader Group plc is a 100% digital business having successfully completed the transition from a print title in 2013. Auto Trader sits at the heart of the UK’s vehicle buying process and operates the UK’s largest digital automotive marketplace.

Auto Trader’s primary activity is to help vehicle retailers compete effectively on the Marketplace in order to sell more vehicles, faster. The Marketplace brings together the largest and most engaged consumer audience. Autotrader.co.uk attracts around 44.5 million monthly cross-platform visits on its sites, with around 68% of visits coming through mobile devices, with the largest pool of vehicle sellers (listing more than 400,000 cars each day). In fact over 80% of all time spent on classified sites is spent on Auto Trader. The Group does not buy or sell any vehicles itself.

Auto Trader has around 92% prompted brand awareness in the UK, with 80% of UK retailer forecourts advertising via the website and around 65% of UK used car transactions involving cars listed on autotrader.co.uk.

Auto Trader’s market-leading position enables it to generate and collect large amounts of data on the UK’s automotive marketplace and leverage it to create a suite of services that allow retailers to:

  • BUY – buy the right vehicles, at the right price
  • MARKET – market their brands and businesses effectively in the digital world
  • SELL- sell more vehicles through advertising on the UK’s largest digital automotive marketplace
  • MANAGE – optimise their stock turn and vehicle margin.

For all trade media enquiries, please contact:

Nigel Wonnacott, PR Director at JJ Marketing, on 07802 483 971 or nigel.wonnacott@jjmarketing.co.uk

Premium German marques dominated the saloon market last year, but which model was most popular on Auto Trader? Congratulations to @BMWUK_ because the brilliant 3 Series took the top spot 😎 https://t.co/PuqN3FML3Q
If you're a franchise or group dealer and would like to find out how you could save £31 per standard move, don't miss out on today's Motor Trade Delivery webinar at midday. Tune in here: https://t.co/LbG6ZnKCec https://t.co/gdCYbban9D
Are you a franchise or group dealership moving vehicles? On average, you can save £31 per standard move with our Motor Trade Delivery offering. Join our webinar tomorrow at midday to find out more. Register here: https://t.co/LbG6ZnKCec https://t.co/R89p5JhCew
With the Finance & Leasing Association announcing the consumer car finance market grew 1% in December, lets look at 2018's most searched for models on finance. Leading the top 5 is the iconic @UKVolkswagen #Golf https://t.co/DCRLNJNM9T
Huge congratulations to everyone at @swanswaygroup for Best Dealership, it's massively deserved. We're delighted to hear how impactful stocking new cars on Auto Trader has been for the business - the perfect example of digital best practice! 🍾 https://t.co/KKm9EYRcpI
Thank you to the @RMI_NFDA team for another excellent #DrivingDigital. Nathan Coe took to the stage this morning to discuss the key changes in the industry & Ian Plummer joined @NFDASueRobinson to share new car opportunities. Looking forward to next year already! https://t.co/kyWdWhiCNs
Don't miss Catherine Faiers on @BBCRadio4's #BriefingRoom at 8pm this evening. She joined the @FT's @Petercampbell1 & Ian Henry of AutoAnalysis to discuss what's on the horizon for the UK automotive industry. You can tune in live here https://t.co/OX7HO8bSLP https://t.co/ZfRrZGAqlO
Good morning! 15 mins to go before our first #ARNLive of 2019. Don't miss out on tips & helpful guidance on hitting your targets. Tune in here https://t.co/K7xuX0IA0p https://t.co/pSt9p565qP
According to today's new car registration figures for January, the market saw a -1.6% dip on last year. However, it's been a strong start for alternatively fuelled vehicles which recorded a +26.3% increase on January 18. You can read our response here: https://t.co/M5DJiNsIBx https://t.co/4MuGEhWiMZ

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