Nearly 1.8 million used cars passed from hand to hand in the first three months of 2022, up 5 percent from the same period last year, according to data released this morning.

Demand for used engines remains exceptionally high due to limited new car production due to the global shortage of semiconductors and the steady decline in supplies affecting the sector for two years.

The increase in waiting lists for new engines has caused an increase in motorists entering the used car market, leading to a sharp rise in used car prices, with the average price almost a third higher than it was just 12 months ago.

Demand for used cars remains high: sales of used engines increased by 5% compared to the same period last year in the first three months of the year, according to new data from the automotive trade organization

In January, February and March, there were 1,774,351 deals with used cars, the Society of Engine Manufacturers and Dealers said on Tuesday.

An additional 86,596 cars went from hand to hand compared to the same period a year ago, although it should be noted that car dealerships across the country were closed for most of the first quarter of 2021 due to pandemic-related blockages and only sales were allowed. “Push and take.” .

Despite the growth in the first three months of the year, the volume of transactions with used cars remains 12.2 percent lower than in 2019 before the pandemic.

However, electric cars are breaking the trend with another record quarter.

Sales of used clean electric vehicles more than doubled from 6,625 to 14,586 – an increase of 120.2 percent – although they still accounted for only 3.6 percent of all transactions.

Fake hybrids and conventional hybrid cars also went from hand to hand in greater numbers than last year, up 35.3% and 28.8% respectively, but petrol and diesel still account for more than 19 of the 20 used engine sales .

The growth of the used car market is in stark contrast to the new car market: the number of registrations fell by 34.1% over the same period as car production continued to be limited by semiconductor shortages and wider supply problems.

Mike Howes, chief executive of SMMT, said the growth in the used car market was “welcome” in light of the ongoing supply crisis, which is stifling manufacturers, but said it was “not surprising given that we were closed last year”.

Richard Peberdi, head of the automotive department at KPMG, added: “The loss of the cost of living is slightly cooling the used car market, but demand remains high and is likely to continue until problems affecting new car production are resolved, and more offers will not enter the market of used cars. This year it is unlikely. “

The average price of a used car in April was £ 17,418 - almost a third higher than in the same month in 2021, says Auto Trader

The average price of a used car in April was £ 17,418 – almost a third higher than in the same month in 2021, says Auto Trader

Have the ceilings reached record prices for used cars?

The latest data from Auto Trader claim that the average price of used cars in April was 32.2 percent higher than a year ago, which means rising prices for the 25th consecutive month.

The average price of a used car in April was £ 17,418, based on advertised prices for around 900,000 cars listed on the site.

However, he says he is starting to see signs of leveling growth, with only a slight increase of 32 per cent over the same period last year, recorded in March, which could be a signal of reaching the market ceiling.

It says that the slight slowdown in average holding prices “is the result of a number of factors, not least the fact that growth is now overshadowing the already very high level of last year.”

The used car market added that the easing of consumer demand caused by the cost of living crisis has also affected demand, which in turn has led to a softening of value when dealers seek to attract customers.

But while record-breaking second-hand prices may be equal, Auto Trader says the data shows no indication that prices will change.

This is due to the fact that the shortage of semiconductors, which led to overstatement of the cost of used cars, continues to affect manufacturers, who are now hampered by additional problems, not least the supply of components from Russia and Ukraine and slowing growth in the Asian market.

Commenting on the April results, Richard Walker, Auto Trader’s director of data and ideas, said: “Obviously, consumer demand may have potential economic hurdles, but from what we see, there is still a high level of appetite for both new and on used cars. market.

“Add to that the fact that long-term cuts in new car supplies are likely to be expanded, in part because of the current geopolitical situation, and we are confident that prices for used cars will remain high for a long time to come.”


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