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Aston Barclay car auctions maintained 70% capacity in November lockdown

Martin Potter, Aston Barclay managing director - customer

Used car values declined or remained static as Aston Barclay continued to trade vehicles online throughout November’s COVID-19 ‘Lockdown 2’in England – maintaining 70% of its usual capacity.

While car retailers across England were forced to close their doors last month – triggering a 27.4% decline in new car registrations and a slowing of the used car trade – Aston Barclay was able to continue operating digitally as retailers attempted to maintain their stocking levels.

The remarketing specialist said in a statement today (December 11) that it believes the sector is anticipating “a strong end to December and start to January” with buyers already showing interest in Aston Barclay’s auctions between Xmas and the New Year.

But Aston Barclay’s managing director - customer, Martin Potter, conceded that there remain a number of factors out of the market’s control that may affect its progress.

“Overall, we were very positive about how November performed compared with the first lockdown, but how Brexit may affect the used car market is still unclear,” he said. “The likelihood is that it will impact the new car market more readily.

“Consumer confidence is still in the balance moving into 2021 with the unemployment rate continuing to rise which is countered by the positive news that the vaccine programme will start before Xmas.

“What I know is that the used car industry would love some consistency to return in 2021.”

Aston Barclay’s November trading saw the average price of 24-to-60-month ex-fleet stock fall by 9.5% (£881) to £10,638 – still higher than the start of 2020 – in what it described as “a short-term blip” as values and conversions begun to improve once more.

Average prices of late and low stock remained static at £16,486 as demand was high but supply remained very low, it said, with the market eagerly waiting for daily rental companies to reveal their replacement policies for 2021 to see if supply improves.

Aston Barclay’s data showed that the budget part-exchange sector (older than 126 months) rose by £60 to £1,312 last month.

Prices of younger part exchanges (55-78 months) fell 9.9% (£765) due to a lack of supply and variety of stock, while older part exchanges (79-126 months) fell back by £183 to £3,517 due to average mileage increasing by 2,500 to 79,000 miles, it said.

EVs and hybrids experienced a price fall in November of £1,341 (9.1%) as they moved closer to equivalent petrol and diesel models.

 

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