posted 1 week ago

Britain's Used Car Market Flourishes In 2016

Key used car sales figures, best selling models, best selling colours plus the state of the motor industry revealed.

Quarter 3 used car sales figures

Motorists purchased more than 2.1 million used cars between July and September 2016 which was a record for any third quarter in Britain, The Society of Motor Manufacturers & Traders confirmed. 2,148,050 swapped hands which was 7.9% more than 2015 (Q3). 1 to 3 year old cars were most sought after followed by those age 7 to 10. 

Second-hand sales rose for cars of all fuel types. Diesel sales increased from 754,677 to 836,304 (+10.8%) and petrol from 1,220,415 to 1,290,203 (+5.7%). Sales for models with alternative power sources such as electric rose from 16,059 to 21,543 (+31.1%).

Best selling body types, models and colours

The Society of Motor Manufacturers & Traders confirmed that the best selling body type was supermini (33.8%). It was followed by family hatchback (27.4%) and saloon (13.4%). The Ford Fiesta – a supermini – was the best selling model. See below for full details.

POSITIONMAKE AND MODELNUMBER OF TRANSACTIONS
1 Ford Fiesta 90,979
2 Ford Focus 63,172
3 Vauxhall Corsa 58,289
4 Vauxhall Astra 43,735
5 Volkswagen Golf 41,213
6 Nissan Qashqai 36,636
7 Volkswagen Polo 29,186
8 Fiat 500 28,425
9 Nissan Juke 27,237
10 Peugeot 208 25,254



The table below reveals the most popular colours.

POSITIONCOLOURNUMBER OF TRANSACTIONS
1 Silver/Aluminium 484,668
2 Black 427,504
3 Blue 396,365
4 Grey 250,202
5 Red 227,313
6 White 205,568
7 Green 75,224
8 Beige/Buff 14,818
9 Yellow 13,731
10 Orange 10,899



Year to date used sales

The Society confirmed that year to date used car sales increased too. Between January and September 2016 (inclusive), 6,329,092 swapped hands compared to 5,867,375 in the same period of 2015 (+7.9%). Alternatively fuelled vehicle sales rose from 44,779 to 59,381 (+32.6%), diesel sales increased from 2,213,958 to 2,465,227 (+11.3%) and petrol sales rose from 3,608,638 to 3,804,484 (+5.4%). 

Customers never had so much choice

Society Chief Executive, Mike Hawes, said: "Sustained growth in the used car sector is great news for consumers who have never enjoyed so much choice – whether in brand, body style or fuel type - and the range of finance on offer makes them more affordable than ever."

He added: "It's particularly promising to see the growing demand for electric vehicles filter into the used car market, but to encourage greater take-up a more widespread commitment to charging infrastructure is needed."

About UK motor industry

The Society of Motor Manufacturers & Traders emphasised the importance of the motor industry to the UK. It directly employs 169,000 people via manufacturing and 814,000 elsewhere. It accounts for 12% of exports, invests £2.5 billion a year in research and development, and 30+ manufacturers produce in excess of 70 models.

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