Sales of used cars at auction in July increased by 12.2% year on year and conversion levels rose to 80% from 73% in the preceding month.
The figures from the National Association of Motor Auctions (NAMA) members “reflect strong levels of trade buyer activity”, particularly among the smaller and medium sized franchised and independent dealers.
“Many of the larger groups are fulfilling their used vehicle stocking needs through their own stock remarketing and part-exchange activities. This underlines the strength of demand in the market place right now,” said Louise Wallis at NAMA.
While new car volumes have benefitted from increasing levels of fleet activity, the used car sector is dominated by the private buyer.
The success of PCPs has clearly seen some traditional used car buyers convert to a new car, which makes the levels of demand being seen in market even more encouraging, Wallis said.
“Rising confidence by consumers in their personal finances is clearly a major factor.
“The latest GfK Confidence Index (July 31st) saw finance confidence increase by 15 points and the forecast is for this to keep improving. It is a position supported by rising demand for unsecured loans and dealer finance reported by both the Finance and Leasing Association and BBA.
“Confidence, especially in financial matters is central to car sales.
“After a long extended period of financial austerity consumers and dealers are re-discovering a level of access to funding and the confidence to use it. As a result dealers are both stocking and selling more cars.”