I was at BCA’s Bedford site earlier this week and had an opportunity to drop into a BMW sales that was taking place.
With all the talk of doom and gloom in the marketplace it was interesting to see the level of demand in the BMWs and Minis on show, typically one to three years old.
Demand was high, with a busy auction hall and a substantial number of bids coming from BCA’s Live On Line system (it’s becoming more popular as it means dealers can save travel costs and time out of the office).
At the point at which I dropped in – about halfway through the day – every car had been sold, every reserve had been met.
Of course, those reserve expectations were far lower than they had been a year earlier. The best price you get at auction is the first price; turn down a bid and put the same car through auction a week later and the price someone is willing to pay will have fallen.
BMW recognised that and the need to shift cars back into the market. Just take the example of the X3 which sold at just over £12,000 – perhaps £10k less than could’ve been expected a year ago. Or the 116i which went for £4,100. It almost persuaded me to dust down my wallet. Almost.
There were plenty of bargains for dealers (and members of the public brave enough to mix it with the trade).
So how are you finding the used car market? Are you able to get a good deal and sell at a reasonable profit?