England 19/07/2013 – The cold start to 2013 kept many people indoors, which led to slow sales of a huge range of retail goods, including used cars.
According to Experian, across the board sales of second hand cars were down by around about 5%. Sales of used cars in Liverpool, Manchester, Cardiff and London were all down. Consumers in the big cities appear to be struggling the most to make ends meet, so are the ones making do with their old vehicles.
Interestingly, sales of used 4x4s bucked the trend. They grew by 7.4% during the first three months of 2013. However, sales of sports cars were particularly badly affected by the poor weather and the lack of ready cash in consumers’ pockets. Sales in this sector were down by 10.4%.
Ford Focuses were still the bestselling used-car, with over 77,000 units being moved during the first three months of the year. Sales of electric vehicles and hybrids have also bucked the trend and remained steady. It seems that UK consumers still want vehicles which are reliable and cheap to run.
However, it was not all bad news for the car industry. Surprisingly sales of new cars have been steadily increasing over the past year. It appears that special offers are finally starting to tempt people to invest in a new vehicle. Even some in the used car industry have welcomed this increase in sales of new cars. They see it as a sign that people’s finances are finally improving, and of course, people who buy a new car will have a used one to sell. The fact that more good quality used cars are becoming available on the market will eventually push prices down slightly, which in turn will enable more people to go out and buy a replacement vehicle.
Good finance deals are the key to survival for used car dealers
The vast majority of the new vehicles sold have been brought under finance. As a result, some of the larger used-car dealers, like Motor Range have reviewed their finance deals too. They have found that by offering good finance terms they have been able to buck the downward trend in used-car sales, and broaden their customer base. What works in the new car market often also proves effective in the used-car market. Therefore, those firms who watch the trends across the entire car market and adapt accordingly are the ones who are making the most sales.
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