Older cars dominate Q2 used car sales

Published:  10 August, 2021

Independent garages could soon see a boom, as used car sales increased by a massive 108.6% in the second quarter of 2021 according to the latest figures from the SMMT, with older cars making up the vast majority. In fact, only 12.7% of all used cars sold during the three-month period were under three years old, the lowest on record.

In total, 2,167,504 used cars were sold during the quarter. This was even 6.6% up on pre-pandemic 2019, and it was also the best Q2 performance and nearly the best quarter ever for the used car market.

The highest growth took place in April, where sales were up 307.4% on 2020 with 724,743 cars sold. This was also 5.0% above the same month in 2019. May and June up 9.9% and 4.6% on 2019 as well and both achieved, the best performance on record.

Second-hand battery electric vehicle (BEV) sales were up 353.9% at 10,903, while plug-in hybrid vehicle (PHEV) sales were up 349.8% at 16,202.These represented 1.3% of the market, while 96.4% were petrol and diesel engine cars, totalling 2,090,396 units.

Commenting on the figures, SMMT Chief Executive Mike Hawes said: “This is welcome news for the used car market as transactions rebounded following nationwide lockdowns which closed retailers. More motorists are turning to used cars as supply shortages continue to affect the new car market, and the increased need for personal mobility with people remaining wary of public transport as they return to work.”


NFDA Chief Executive Sue Robinson added: “The outlook for the used car sector is strong as supplies of new car vehicles remains constrained for the time being. We expect growth in the number of used plug-in vehicles coming onto market in the coming quarters.”

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