Used car values in the UK dropped by 1.7% in December 2018, according to industry sources. Demand dropped dramatically in the same period, falling to its lowest point since November in the previous year. While December is traditionally a time of lower demand and sales in the used car industry, a fall in value isn’t necessarily the norm.
On the whole, 2018 was a strong year in the used car market, which could make the fall in vehicle values seem more pronounced.
Electric vehicles performing strongly
It’s not all doom and gloom, however. The electric vehicle sector performed well, and values in this category actually increased by 0.3% for models that were three years old and had 60k miles on the clock. Certain models are very much in demand, including the Nissan Leaf, Nissan e-NV200 and the Renault Zoe. Prices for these models are continuing to rise.
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There is also good news in another sector of the used car market, albeit a little surprising. According to Motor Trader magazine, diesel cars are also performing well in the used car market, despite sales of new diesel vehicles slumping due to changing regulations in the UK.
Derren Martin, the UK valuations head at cap hpi, explained that affordable electric cars continue to be highly sought after, despite models at the higher end of the market moving much more slowly. He also explained what the outlook is for the used car market in the first part of 2019: “As a new year gets underway, there is often a feeling amongst vendors and buyers that prices will rise through January. Over the past five years, the average value movement in our Live product during January has actually been a drop of 0.4%. 2018 proved to be the year of the used car. Demand and prices held firm through the year, and many franchised dealers joined independents and car supermarkets in increasing their activity in the used arena. The trend looks set to continue into 2019.”