Manheim’s Dealer Dashboard shows early March saw a decrease in used vehicle activity due to the focus on the car plate-change, but as part-exchange stock started to filter through, sales quickly picked up resulting in an uplift from 12.8 to 13.3 compared with February.
The increase in used car volume helped to stimulate increased search activity online, but didn’t necessarily translate into more overall enquiries – consumers simply had more stock available to pick from and dealers had less time to spend with consumers due to increased demand on their time, said John Simpson, managing director of Manheim Retail Services.
In the wholesale market March continued where February left off with newer stock strengthening in value while part-exchange remained fairly flat.
Values for both increased however, the latter by just £1 to £2,400.
But the newer stock for retail rocketed 6.2% to £9,249 which is double February’s rise in value and the highest value in more than 12 months.
The age of part-exchange vehicles continues to edge up, but for the first time in six months we have seen a fall in mileage.
The compact executive part-exchange was the most interesting performer with values rising 2.8% on the back of falls in age and mileage of 3.4% and 1.3% respectively, giving the part-exchange compact executive segment the highest rise in first time conversions, up 5.6% to 82%.
But conversion rates for newer retail compact executive vehicles fell 20% to 61%.
Smaller vehicle part-exchanges continued to hold steady in terms of age, mileage and price.
Equally they are proving to be the most sought after vehicles with first time conversion rates growing to 89% compared with 86% for all part exchanges.
“Those lower mileage, newer vehicle values continue to increase, but the fall in first time conversions in this area by nearly 9% suggests the trade seems to be looking for keener bargains in the part- exchange stock pool,” said Mike Pilkington, managing director of Manheim Remarketing.