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Pre-reg to account for 21% of September sales, Cap HPI reveals

Philip Nothard

A survey carried out by Cap HPI has revealed that one-in-four dealers expects volumes of pre-registered vehicles to exceed 21% of total new sales in September.

The results indicate that about 97,000 pre-registered vehicles could flood the market during the key plate-change month.

Dealers pre-registration predictions for the month showed that 26% expecting pre-registration volumes to exceed 21%, and 43% expect volumes to be between 11% and 20%.

Philip Nothard, consumer and retail specialist at Cap HPI, said: “If new sales volumes match 2015, these figures would mean over 97,000 pre-registered vehicles in September.

“While many dealers have assimilated pre-registration activity into their business models, it can put smaller and independent dealers under pressure.

“Pre-registration volumes vary widely between brands, and while pre-registration helps drive some impressive new car sales figures, it can place pressure on the nearly new values.”

Cap HPI’s survey shows a significant increase in expected volumes from a similar study in March.

Dealers predicting pre-registration volumes of six to 10% dropped from 20% in March to 12% in September. While those seeing volumes in excess of 21% leapt from 17% to 26%.

Nothard added: “Market sentiment is pointing to a strong September. This comes on top of a record first half for new vehicles sales.

“How the industry copes with increasing volumes of vehicles returning to the market, and ‘forced registrations’ into pre-registration and daily rental channels, will underpin the stability of the used market into 2017.

“Strong consumer demand for used demand is supporting positive dealer sentiment.

“Continued strong consumer demand will be the key factor in underpinning residual values over the coming months, as record volumes of vehicles return to the market.”

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