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March saw an increase in the sale of used cars due to lower prices

Low advertised prices played a key role in accelerating the pace of used car sales in March, when cars spent an average of just 35 days on the road. This means a decrease of six days compared to February and two days less than the same period last year.

According to MOTORS’ Market View analysis of trends for March and Q1, all sales segments experienced the fastest month-on-month (MoM) and year-on-year (YoY) sales. Auto dealerships led the pack with cars spending just 21 days in stock, down from 29 days in February.

Franchised retailers saw their average days in stock drop from 34 to 29 compared to February, while independents improved from 56 to 49 days in MoM.

The data also revealed that cars priced between £10,000 – £14,999 and £15,000 – £19,999 achieved the fastest sales, taking between 30 and 32 days respectively. Additionally, small cars 2 to 5 years old are more affordable, with prices reaching £19,505 in March, down 11% YoY.

The average price of a used car in MOTORS saw a month-on-month fall of £58 (or 0.6%) to £16,766, marking a 9% drop YoY. This downward trend has been ongoing since reaching a peak of £18,903 in January 2023.

In the quarter, used car prices decreased by 4% compared to Q4 2023.

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While overall dealer stock levels remained stable month over month, averaging 42 vehicles, there was a 6% decrease YoY. This suggests that retailers are prioritizing the return of sold stock rather than building stock.

Auto majors are down 6% MoM and 22% YoY deficit, further downgrade from December 2023.

Regarding the types of fuel, gasoline accounted for 49% of sales, diesel accounted for 39%, hybrid accounted for 7%, and electric accounted for 5%. Diesel models attracted the most ad views among car buyers in March, followed by gasoline, hybrid, and electric.

This month’s best-selling cars are electric Polestar 2 again Hyundai IONIQ 6and the fire engine The Audi Q8all spend just 10 days in stock.

Lucy Tugby, Marketing Director of MOTORS, highlighted the increase in consumer desire to shop in March, which she put down to improved sales days and dealers’ faster availability of stock and competitive prices. He also noted the gradual fall in prices, making small cars priced under £20,000 more affordable for consumers.

Tugby concluded that the Q1 data shows the potential for retailers to succeed by using online exposure and efficiency to attract, win, and retain customers.

As of 2021, MOTORS was owned by O3 Industries and Novum Capital.

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