BCA’s used car experts believe that less is definitely more for those who want to maintain the resale value of their vehicle.
‘The majority of motorists are wary of any upgrades that are retro-fitted, particularly on younger cars, where there are concerns that this might void any warranties,’ said BCA’s Tim Naylor. ‘And by modifying a standard car you are actually reducing your potential audience of buyers.
‘Of course, there are some exceptions, such as the professional aftermarket body-kits from approved suppliers, such as AMG or Alpina, or the bespoke rebuilds by Project Kahn. But generally, if it isn’t a factory fit, then it is unlikely to add value and may even cause steeper depreciation. If you want to maintain the value of your car, choose your mods very carefully.’
The firm has said that alloy wheels can add £200 to the right car or devalue it by the same amount on the wrong car, while packs such as hands-free and Bluetooth may add £150.
Fashion changes very quickly, but generally motorists prefer relatively sober, manufacturer shades. BCA’s research shows that silver remains the most popular used car colour, ahead of black, blue, grey and red.
White has become hugely popular on new cars in the past two or three years but still only represents three per cent of the total monthly sales at BCA.
Body skirts, spoilers, and extended wheel arches are most likely to devalue a car says BCA, because they ‘scream boy racer’. The figure lost could be £500, while overtinted windows could devalue the car by several hundred pounds – and that’s without the legal issues.