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Used car values increase to record levels in March, says BCA

BCA’s latest Pulse report shows that the headline average car values increased in March, rising by £57 compared to February to record the highest monthly value this year and the third highest on record.

There were sizeable value rises to record levels in the fleet & lease and dealer sectors, while nearly-new values improved for the first time this year.

BCA’s data shows that average values improved in March by £57 (0.7%) to £7,387, compared to the previous month.  Average performance against CAP Clean fell by half a point to 98.36%.  Year-on-year, March 2014 was ahead by £387 or 5.5%, with average age up by a month at 62 months and average mileage falling slightly at just over 56,000.

CAP Clean performance was up on a year ago by half a point.

Simon Henstock, BCA’s UK operations director, said: "Despite volumes remaining significantly higher than we have seen in recent months, demand was very strong across the range of stock on offer at BCA in March.

"We saw greater volumes from dealer part-exchange sources and a small increase in fleet/lease volumes.  This shift in the model mix meant the headline figure could have been even higher as the individual product sectors saw quite significant value uplifts."

He continued: “As we said last month, used car demand remains very strong, particularly for retail quality vehicles.  But as Easter approaches, the market is showing early signs of softening and, with the March new registration figures being the highest in a decade, this will generate more volume into the used car arena. 

"If supply starts to outstrip demand, there will inevitably be some downward pressure on average values, particularly for less attractive or poorly presented vehicles.”

He added: “Sellers should keep close to the market and work with their remarketing partner to ensure their vehicles are sensibly appraised and realistically valued to sell first time.”

Fleet & lease cars averaged £9,572 in March, a rise of £381 or 4.1% compared to February, and a new high point for the sector.   Values were up by a significant £838 (9.5%) year on year.   CAP performance fell marginally over the month to 98.49% but was ahead year-on-year.  Retained value against original MRP (Manufacturers Retail Price) was up by nearly a point at 43.81% compared to February and was up by 1.3 points, year-on-year. 

Average dealer part-exchange values also rose to record levels, climbing by £109 (2.8%) to £3,906 in March.  Year-on-year, values were ahead by £340 (9.5%) compared to March 2013 with average age rising and mileage falling over the year.  CAP performance fell back over the month to 96.54% in March, but was up by nearly a point compared to March 2013.  Compared to March 2012, values have risen by £1,003 - a substantial 34.5% rise over the 24 month period.

Nearly new values improved for the first time this year, rising to £20,315, a small increase of £29 over February.  Volumes remain very low and model mix remains the most significant price factor.  CAP remained static at just over 100%.



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