Electrics and hybrids edge ahead of diesels in used car values

The all-new Volvo XC90 - ChargingOnline car classifieds website Auto Trader is reporting that average used car values in the first quarter of 2016 for alternative fuel vehicles (AFVs) – which include electrics and hybrids – have improved by £1,502, or seven per cent, on a year-on-year basis.

The gap over conventionally powered vehicles continues to grow, especially over diesel, where values for average used cars continue to decline year-on-year. There are differences, however, between the different types of alternative fuel vehicles. Pure electric vehicles increased by £750 year-on-year, while average hybrid values went up by an even larger £1,683.

In 2015, new AFV registrations continued with strong growth of over 40 per cent to secure a new car market share of nearly three percent. Plug-ins doubled in volume, and pure electric new car registrations grew by 50 per cent.

In March 2016 Auto Trader recorded a 27 per cent jump in the number of online advert views for AFVs compared with March 2015, and there is a growing number of AFVs entering the second-hand market, with the market share for used AFVs has increasing from 0.92 per cent to 1.18 per cent year on year.

Karolina Edwards-Smajda, Auto Trader Retailer & Consumer Products Director said: “While we are seeing more used alternative fueled vehicles turning up on dealers’ forecourts, the increase in ad views points to more consumers than ever looking to buy. Used AFV values are rising significantly with a four-digit increase as buyers are drawn in by low fuel running costs, current road tax rates that mean AFVs are often free to tax and, for some, exemption from the London Congestion Charge. While both electric and hybrid are growing in value, it’s the hybrid of electric and conventional power that are proving particularly popular with used car buyers. This choice offers the greatest flexibility for a consumer unlike pure electric where the more limited range isn’t suitable for all car buyers.”

Average values for used petrol cars have also risen year-on-year by £790 (8.3 per cent). The loser in the second-hand market continues to be diesel, with prices dropping by £138 (-1.3 per cent). That represents the eighth month that diesel’s average used car values have been less than a petrol’s. Diesel’s used car market share increased to 47.91 per cent from 46.94 per cent, while petrol’s market share dropped from 52.13 to 50.91 per cent.

Auto Trader says the volume of diesel cars in the used market place continues to grows as ex-fleet stock enters the marketplace. There are currently over 361,000 used models advertised on Auto Trader at any time compared to nearly 337,000 in the same quarter 2015.

Karolina Edwards-Smajda, said: “Diesel vehicle used values continue to decline as supply increases and we are expecting to see equal market share between petrol and diesel come August 2016. With the number of used petrol vehicles on the UK’s forecourts declining, average used values are increasing albeit by a small margin. The drop in fuel costs may be exacerbating the trends in both petrol and diesel average used values, as consumers are less concerned about reducing costs at the fuel pump as well as petrol engines in newer cars proving they can compete with diesel for fuel efficiency.”

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