According to the What Car? Car Price Index, the cost of new cars has fallen during four of the past five months. The average new car now costs 0.5% less than a month ago and What Car? predicts further falls ahead.
Sales to private customers are down 4% in 2004 compared with 2003, according to the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders.
In December, city car prices have dropped by 2.4% and family cars have become 2.3% cheaper.
In four other classes, prices have dipped more modestly, with MPV people carriers 0.5% cheaper month on month, 4x4 and executive car prices each down 0.4%, and small cars 0.3% cheaper.
Three classes have risen slightly in price over the past month: luxury cars (up 0.5%), superminis (up 0.3%) and compact execs (up a nominal 0.1%).
David Motton, What Car?’s editor, says: “Whenever sales start to slow down, salesmen will be keener to offer a big discount. Now is a good time to snap up a new-car bargain. You should never pay the full asking price for a new car. Our research proves you can save on average £1518 – that’s 8.5% off the list price.”