SMMT data published today shows that the number of used cars changing hands crashed during lockdown.
The number of vehicle registered to a new keeper peaked at year on year loss of -74.2% in April, although the pace of decline eased as the quarter progressed, to -17.5% in June, as private sellers and buyers got back on the move and transactions began to restart.
This news has been welcomed by Andy Hamilton, CEO of LKQ Euro Car Parts, who said: “We expected to see sales pick up in June, as lockdown restrictions were relaxed, and with people being encouraged to use private modes of transport. Assuming this continues, it’s good news for the independent aftermarket, as older cars that are out of warranty will likely be taken to local garages for service and repair work, rather going back to the dealers”.
“After an extended period with little to no business coming through the workshop doors, this will give independent garages a welcome boost, and an opportunity to expand their customer base. And with a spike in MOTs on the way as well – as those that were deferred in lockdown will soon need to be completed, alongside those that are also due – the key for garages is going to be managing this demand safely and effectively” said Hamilton.
Data from classified sites, such as Heycar and comment from auctioneers, including Aston Barclay and BCA suggest that there is plenty of demand for used vehicles, but relatively little stock. This is due in part to a lack of motorists trading their old vehicle in against a new one.