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Efficient used car sales vital to 2020 dealer profits, says epyx

Vicky Gardner, head of remarketing at epyx

Franchised car retailers will have to continue to drive the efficiency of their used car sales in order to maintain profitability during 2020, according to epyx.

The ecommerce specialist, which describes its 1link Disposal Network as “one of the longest-established sources of trade stock in the UK”, has said that the new car market is unlikely to stage a recovery – but used demand should stay consistent.

Vicky Gardner, head of remarketing at epyx, said: “Whatever the outcomes of the current macroeconomic issues affecting the car market, ranging from the general election to Brexit, there is unlikely to be any substantial increase in new car sales.

“However, one of the lessons of the last recession is just how resilient used car sales remain in tough times. The fact is that people need cars and, in a situation when they are uneasy with buying new, they will turn to used vehicle sales because of the value they offer.

“In a market that is probably going to be characterised by more uncertainty and low consumer confidence, it is very clear that it is the franchise dealers who are able to offer the most effective used car propositions are likely to be the ones who will prosper most.”

This month's used car market volume data published by the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) revealed that the UK's used car sales volumes had risen by almost 20,000 units year-todate to the end of October.

Gardner said that franchise dealers had been noticeably working to improve the efficiency of their used car stock purchasing in recent months.

Many have chosen to increase their used car stock and speed up processes in a bid to compete with the focussed approach of a growing used car supermarket sector.

“This is very much part of a longer term trend,” said Gardner.

She said that fewer dealers were leaving the office to buy their used car stock, however, adding: “There is an increasing accent on buying ready-to-retail stock, presenting it in the best condition online and moving it on quickly.

“If anything, we expect this to intensify in 2020. The market will remain both busy and competitive, so there will be an accent on buying at the right price and selling within stock limit times.”

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