Used car values slowly softening

Used car prices were 1.1% higher in August than the same month last year.

According to the Auto Trader Retail Price Index, the average price of a used car was £17,732 last month.

Although this represents only a marginal increase, it does mean used car prices have now risen for 41 consecutive months, with the average price in August 2023 36.9% higher than the same month in 2020 and 43.3% more than in 2019.

Auto Trader’s director of data and insight, Richard Walker, said: “We’ve been seeing growing levels of volatility in the market over recent months as levels of Covid-19 related new car supply gradually improves. However, the market remains full of pockets of profit potential and our figures should serve as a clarion call for retailers: in such a nuanced market it’s vital to follow the data, and not the headlines to inform pricing and stocking strategies.

“As supply levels of younger stock improves, particularly of electric vehicles, it’s likely we’ll continue to see a softening in prices over the coming months. However, with no sign of a dramatic change in consumer appetites, there’s certainly no indication of prices falling off a figurative cliff edge. There’s still very strong pricing pockets available, including with used EVs – the demand is there, so if retailers use data to buy them and sell them at the right price, there’s plenty of profit potential available.”