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Used cars delivered largest April values decline since 2011, Cap HPI

Derren Martin, director valuations at Cap HPI

City cars and superminis seemed to be falling out of favour as the two segments led the largest April decline in used cars values since 2011, Cap HPI has reported.

The used car valuations experts recorded the sector’s largest drop in values in its Live valuations since December 2015 and the largest drop during an April since 2011 last month with a monthly drop of 2.3% at the three-year and 60,000-mile point.

City cars and superminis values fell by 2.8% and 3.1% respectively, while SUV fell in line with the market, dropping by an average of 2.2% or nearly £300.

Derren Martin, head of UK valuations at Cap HPI, said: “After 18-months of market strength, the perfect storm hit during April.

“Used values were already high, with little or no appetite by retailers to either push prices to the consumer up or squeeze their margins further, while supply increased from part- exchanges and fleet returns generated by the 19 plate.

“Buyers that were active took advantage of the situation, offering below previous cap values for the vast majority of cars.

“There has been some scaremongering in the used market surrounding these value drops, with some even comparing to what happened during the recession of 2008 but there is no comparison.

“There is no suggestion that large price drops are a likely theme from now on. In 2008, access to finance was a key driver – that is not an issue in 2019.”

Cap HPI said that the ‘lower medium sector’ saw pressure on prices, and in particular on the values of diesel cars.

Diesel has remained popular in the used market but generally for larger cars.

Diesel, lower medium car prices dropped by an average of 3.3% or £300, Cap HPI said, whereas petrol variants dropped by a lower amount 2.6% or £225, whilst hybrids, with lower supply closer matched by demand dropping by just 1.3% or £150.

The electric vehicle sector saw a varied performance by model.

Following the unusual trend of value increases over the last 12 months the Renault Zoe stayed level in April, while the Peugeot iON and Hyundai IONIQ both went up in price.

Martin said: “There will undoubtedly be the natural impact of high stock levels for some time to come, off the back of increased supply and lower sales rates in the last few weeks.

“This will likely have an impact on values as we move through May, particularly as demand will be affected by the two Bank Holidays and school half-term.

“The average movements of all fuel-types in Live valuations during May, over the last five- years, has been a drop of 1.6%, with even last year, dubbed the ‘Year of the Used Car’, witnessing a drop of 1.3% in that month.”


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