Used car sales reach record levels

Used car demand and sales reached record levels in March, according to new data from Auto Trader.

Its Retail Price Index, which is based on more than 800,000 daily pricing observations, found that average prices fell just 0.7% month-on-month, while a six per cent rise in demand outstripped a 0.7% increase in supply.

This has contributed to an average selling time from dealerships of just 25 days, which is two days faster than February and three days faster than March last year.

Demand for cars in the under one-year age category was particularly strong, up 30.4% year-on-year and 42% compared to February.

Richard Walker, data and insights director, said: “Despite an uncertain economic and political backdrop, we’ve seen a positive start to 2024, with demand remaining robust throughout the quarter. But whilst our outlook for the rest of the year is confident, retailers face an incredibly nuanced and complex market which will continue to move at pace. To navigate the market, and to identify both future opportunities and risks, we’ve made more of our insights and intelligence available than ever before; judging by the fact our valuations data alone was used over 240 million times last year, around 100 million more times than 2022, we can see just how powerful it’s been in informing key retail decisions.”