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Used car values increase 13% year on year

6th March 2013 Print
British Car Auctions

Confidence in the retail motor sector reported by the SMMT’s latest figures has been underlined by leading vehicle auction company, British Car Auctions (BCA) as it reports a 13% year on year growth in used car values for February 2013.

Average used car values remained above £7,000 for the third consecutive month as the market continued to be short of retail quality stock. And whilst across the board in February used cars averaged £7,056, down by £81 compared to January, they were significantly ahead of February 2012 by £812 (13%).

Indeed, February 2013 recorded the third highest average monthly value since BCA began reporting on used car values in 2005, with Fleet & Lease values climbing to a new record level. Average part-exchange values also remained above £3,500 for the third month in a row as demand remained intense at the budget end of the marketplace.

Commenting on the February used car figures, BCA’s UK Operations Director, Simon Henstock said: “The rise in average prices at the ‘value-for-money’ end of the market must be a reflection of the current economic conditions. As household budgets remain squeezed, the increased demand from motorists for affordable transport is driving values upwards. There is likely to be continued demand for ‘budget motoring’ from drivers who simply cannot afford to buy a more expensive car, but still need personal transport and need it quickly, because their current vehicle has become too expensive to run, repair or maintain.

“Despite values being at record levels, however, there remains an underlying fragility in the marketplace reflecting the difficult on-going economic conditions” added Henstock. “Prices are high largely as a result of the constricted supply and, seasonal variations aside, we should expect a similar picture across much of 2013.

“We know from experience that values cannot keep rising and there will inevitably be an adjustment. How this will manifest itself is impossible to judge at this stage, but with the Easter break often representing a watershed in demand we might see some pressure on values in April. With the March plate change now in full swing and more confidence in the retail new car market, we expect to see significantly higher volumes and much greater choice for buyers at auction over the next few weeks.”

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British Car Auctions