“It is encouraging to see that the used car market performed well in 2021 despite a challenging year; franchised dealers stood up during these times, enabling customers to have mobility through the sales of millions of used cars and ongoing servicing of all vehicles”, Sue Robinson, NFDA Chief Executive of the National Franchised Dealers Association (NFDA), commenting on the latest SMMT’s used car figures.
The UK’s used car market grew by 11.5% to 7,530,956 transactions in 2021, 777,997 more than in 2020. Despite the increase, the 2021 market was still -5.5% below the pre-pandemic five-year average.
Last year saw a strong Q2 with 2.1 million transactions, while the market declined moderately by -3.1% in Q4. Demand for battery electric vehicles (BEV) and plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs) rose significantly by 119.2% and 75.6% to 40,228 and 56,861 transactions respectively. Transactions of used petrol (+10.7%) and diesel (9.8%) grew to a total of 7,277,291 units, equating to 96.6% of all used car sales.
Sue Robinson added: “Over the past months, franchised dealers have adapted the profile of their stock to include older vehicles and a variety of brands to offer a wider choice of second-hand cars for the benefit of their customers.
“Although electrified vehicles currently represent a small proportion of the used car market, this transition will further accelerate as more EVs reach the second-hand market. This rapidly growing segment is being enabled by knowledgeable franchised dealers who are assisting customers with choosing the correct vehicle for their needs.
“In 2022, we expect the used car market will remain strong as franchised dealers continue to see buoyant demand from consumers. The undersupply of stock due to the global semi-conductor shortages has resulted in fewer vehicles being produced over the past two years and we expect this to gradually ease going forward”.