SMMT reports slight decline in used car market
16 May 2018
Author: Sean Keywood
UK used car sales fell by 4.8% year-on-year during the first quarter of 2018, according to the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT).
Despite the decline, the SMMT described the market's performance as 'relatively solid', with more than two million recorded sales making it the third-best start to a year on record.
It was also a far stronger performance than that of the new car market, which fell by 12.4% during the same period.
In a reversal of trends in the new car market, demand for used petrol cars fell by 9.7%, while demand for diesel was up by 2%.
There was strong growth in sales of used alternatively fuelled vehicles, for which demand rose by 15.9%, although they still represented only 1.2% of the market.
SMMT chief executive Mike Hawes said: "Despite the overall decline in demand, the UK's used car sector remains at a very high level and it's great to see millions of consumers benefitting from some of the latest, safest and cleanest models now filtering into the market.
"To maintain this choice and make the fastest possible improvements to air quality, we need stability in the new car market.
"That means giving consumers confidence to trade in their older cars for the best new, low-emission model to suit their needs - whatever the fuel type."
The Ford Fiesta was the bestselling used car during the quarter, ahead of the Ford Focus, Vauxhall Corsa, Vauxhall Astra and Volkswagen Golf.
Black was the most popular used car colour, ahead of silver/aluminium, blue, grey and white.