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Demand is still there for used cars, says Manheim

A survey of 100 franchised dealers by Manheim Retail Services has found that demand for used cars is holding up despite the UK's economic downturn.

Dealers reported that showroom walk-ins were still relatively strong, representing around two-thirds of enquiries.

The remaining third was from customers who had registered interest in specific vehicles prior to visiting the dealership.

Across the five main vehicle segments (small hatchback, medium family, large family, executive, 4x4) enquiry levels and test drives were only marginally down compared with the previous three months.

Not surprisingly, sales-to-enquiry conversion rates were down by 8.3% for executive models and 7.6% for 4x4s. However, they actually increased for medium family vehicles by 0.9%.

John Simpson, managing director, Manheim Retail Services, said: “With negative consumer confidence forcing new car registrations down in July by 13%, it is encouraging to see that dealers are maintaining activity in used car sales.

"In the five vehicle segments analysed, used car sales were only down by an average of less than one unit per dealer per month.

"And as to be expected, interest levels and sales were highest in the small hatchback and medium family segments.”

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