“As new car sales continue to be impacted by the ongoing supply constraints, it is encouraging to see that consumer appetite for second-hand vehicles remained robust in the first quarter of the year”, Sue Robinson, Chief Executive of the National Franchised Dealers Association (NFDA), commenting on the latest SMMT’s used car figures.
The UK’s used car market rose 5.1% in the first quarter of 2022 with 1,774,351 transactions. There were 86,596 more cars changing hands compared to the same period in 2021. Despite this increase, used car transactions remain -12.2% below pre-pandemic levels.
Used car sales in Q1 were driven by a strong market in January and February, with rises of 17.7% and 7.4% respectively; whilst March saw a decline of -6.8%.
Used battery electric vehicles (BEVs) saw an impressive 120.2% growth; plug in hybrids (PHEVs) and hybrids (HEVs) rose by 35.3% to 14,433, and 28.8% to 35,007 units respectively.
Petrol and diesel continued to account for the vast majority of used sales (over 96%), with plug-in vehicles comprising 3.6% of the total market share, up from 1.6% in Q1 2021.
Sue Robinson continued: “It is positive to see the used electric vehicle segment grow significantly as sales of new EVs filter through the used car market.
“Franchised dealers and, in particular, Electric Vehicle Approved (EVA) accredited retailers, continue to facilitate the growth of the new and used EV markets and the increase in transactions is testament to their efforts.
“Despite the uptake of second-hand EVs, the fact that internal combustion engine vehicles are still dominating the used car market shows that the renewal of the UK car parc needs time despite industry’s investments.
“Going forward, demand for used vehicles is expected to remain stable although external factors such as supply issues will continue to play a key role.”
About the RMI
The Retail Motor Industry represents the interests of operators in England, Wales, Northern Ireland and the Isle of Man providing sales and services to motorists and businesses. The RMI has a formal association with the independent Scottish Motor Trade Association which represents the retail motor industry in Scotland.