Used car values tapering off

Used car values averaged £8,451 at BCA in May, a fall of 1.5% on the previous month but still 0.5% higher than May 2021.

Data from BCA Valuations shows that used car demand from dealers and car supermarkets is increasingly focussed on vehicles that can be retailed quickly to meet the needs of retail customers. The best presented and prepared cars with higher condition grades attract a lot of competitive bidding, while lower grade, often older and higher mileage vehicles need to be competitively valued if they are to sell first time.

BCA UK COO Stuart Pearson said: “Anecdotal feedback from our professional buyers suggests that the retail market remains tough, however there is reasonable demand in certain sectors and segments and their focus remains on stock turn to get head of any future pricing change that the market experiences.

“The same external pressures continue to influence the marketplace as last month, with the cost-of-living squeeze and rising energy and fuel prices and now the spectre of a ‘summer of discontent’ ahead with strike action being talked about across a number of public services.   These issues cause economic uncertainty that make it more likely that consumers will rein in their spending and this will inevitably impact used car retailers and the wholesale used vehicle sector.

“This leads us to a familiar position where a two-tier market develops with strong demand for vehicles that are properly prepared, well-presented with a strong provenance and a clean grade, while less attractive vehicles need to be incredibly competitively valued if they are to sell first time.”