So says BCA communications director Tony Gannon. He advised dealers to market their used stock on the sheer value for money they offer.
‘Used cars have never been better value or more affordable,’ he said. Dealers can use this headline-grabbing auction hall fact to give their marketing penetration real impact.
It is also financially astute for them to do so, he warned. ‘Inventory depreciation remains a critical factor for any organisation holding large volumes of vehicles.’ Dealers affected in this way should use current positive trading conditions to clear out reserves of vehicles.
Gannon is fairly confident of a strong start to 2009. ‘We might see some improved levels of activity in the first quarter – which hopefully will set the scene for the rest of the year.’
Dealers, however, should remain sensitive to buyers’ concerns. ‘There can be little doubt that consumers still feel under pressure. Despite the significant cuts in the Bank base rate, and the fall in VAT, the only real benefits have been felt by those with tracker mortgages.
‘Add to this the spectre of rising unemployment, and it is easy to see why markets for big-ticket items are stalling in every sector – not just the motor industry.’