Used vehicle market is becoming more seasonal again reports Aston Barclay

Used vehicle market is becoming more seasonal again reports Aston Barclay

  • Young part exchanges and ex-fleet stock are in high demand
  • Petrol is the only fuel type to report a price rise in Q3
  • 10% increase in fleet sales reported in Q3
  • Seasonal market will allow remarketing industry to plan more efficiently

The used market is starting to develop more of a seasonal feel to it for the first time since before the Covid pandemic, according to a new insights report by vehicle remarketing experts Aston Barclay.

Its Q3 used vehicle insights report has witnessed overall demand and prices gently slowing down as buyers become more selective due to market conditions, whilst volumes continue to rise as new vehicle production improves.

Immediate proof of more used cars coming to auction came as Aston Barclay saw a 10% increase in fleet car sales in Q3 compared to the previous quarter, fuelled by a strong September plate change.

“Covid presented numerous challenges for new vehicle production, which made the market very sporadic. The new vehicle shortage pivoted the usual New Year, summer, winter and new March and September plate change market adjustments we had been used to for years, but in Q3 we started to see signs the market is reverting to normal,” said Nick Thompson, Aston Barclay’s Chief Customer Officer.

The insight found that, currently, the current hot spot for wholesale buyers is between £8-15,000 which means ex-fleet and young dealer part exchange cars (55-75 months) are in high demand. This resulted in prices of young dealer part exchanges remaining static at £11,266 in Q3, while fleet cars fell by -3.7% (£621) to £16,022, following the trend of prices being marked down by the residual value guides.

EV prices fell again in Q3 by 7.7% (-£1,702) to £20,398 but Aston Barclay continue to see more ICE and EV models at the £10-15,000 mark reaching price parity with one another, which is making the ICE v EV choice more straightforward for consumers.

Used EVs reached 4% of Aston Barclay’s total sold volume in the quarter for the first time, a number which will continue to grow as leasing vendors report new EVs and ICE car deliveries are now on par with one another.

Petrol was the only fuel type to experience a price rise in Q3, as car buyers continued to move away from diesel.  Prices rose by 5.1% (£404) to £8,197, their highest level since Aston Barclay’s started publishing the report in 2017.Prices of late and low cars (below 24 months) also fell by 5.7% to £22,623. This is likely due to franchised dealers continuing to buy fewer used cars as their forecourts are full of dealer demonstrators and ex-management cars as more tactical sales are introduced by OEMs.

“With the increase in used car volume and a slight drop in demand, the business has benefited from the return of physical auctions across all six of our sites – we’ve seen buyers across the business become more selective with their purchases, so the ability to come and inspect the vehicles in person has been a huge draw for our customer base.

“This, along with our teams utilising live CAP data to match the right vehicles to the right buyers, means we can continue to retain our deep relationship with buyers and vendors to provide them with insights that yield informed decision making.

“2023 has very much been the transition year for the used car market. It remains very healthy and, with new vehicle supply improving, the entire supply chain is reverting back to a seasonal approach. It enables everyone to plan more efficiently, and we could see replacement cycles returning to a pre-Covid level,” said Thompson.

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