Used car market could reach 7.7m sales, says Cox Automotive

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The UK used car market could see up to 7.7 million transactions by the end of the year, says Cox Automotive.

In a full year used market forecast, Cox Automotive predicts 1,896,630 transactions in Q2 (versus an upside scenario of 1,966,972 transactions), and 7,350,205 for the full year (versus 7,669,814).

Cox Automotive’s upside forecast for Q1 was 99.5% accurate to the SMMT’s actuals which were published last week.

SMMT figures have shown that the market grew 6.5% to around 2 million units, the fifth successive quarter of growth and a five-year high.

Philip Nothard, insight director, said: “This bounce could lead us to conclude that our upside scenario is now the most likely to play out by the end of December.

“However, while I’d be delighted to see the number of transactions exceed our predictions, I think it’s important we don’t get ahead of ourselves, and I instead remain ‘cautiously optimistic’.

“When looking at the used market, we must always have one eye on the new, which is experiencing significant volatility right now. And, despite recent positive economic headlines, the cost-of-living crunch remains very real for many people.

“Interest rates remain high, and with a general election due, consumer appetite for anything perceived as a risk is low. For these reasons, we believe our baseline forecast should remain the guideline for quarters two, three and four rather than the more optimistic upside.”

Nothard states that dealers need to continue to reflect on issues currently impacting new, as well as price volatility, as what takes place in the new market will become a “hurdle” for used operators eventually.

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