Manheim found that the first few weeks of 2009 have seen an increase way beyond any normal seasonal uplift.
Buyers are literally fighting over stock, it reports!
This has pushed the average wholesale used car price up to £6054 – a rise of 5.8 per cent in January. Compared to a 3.1 per cent FALL in December.
It’s certainly taken everyone by surprise. That’s why Manheim’s urging caution, ‘as retail dealers settle down to the task of finding new customers for this stock’.
Mike Pilkington, MD of Manheim Auctions & Remarketing said: ‘There is no doubt that dealers had reduced their stocks pre-Christmas – a lot of this current demand has been driven by the need to replenish empty forecourt spaces.
‘Although there appears to be healthy consumer interest, it remains to be seen for just how long this will be sustained. We have also seen many new trade buyers coming to auction, and this has contributed to the huge rise in auction conversion rates.
‘The more buyers bidding, the higher the prices.’ It’s also led to some of Manheim’s sites recording 100 per cent conversion rates. And the Colchester branch smashed the 6000-unit sales barrier in a month.
As for specific sectors, January really was a complete about-turn.
• Fleet: values ROSE by 9.0 per cent (£425). They FELL by 3.1 per cent (£149) in December.
• Dealer: values ROSE by 1.9 per cent (£31). They FELL by 4.9 per cent (£82) in December.
• Manufacturer: values ROSE by 3.2 per cent (£284). They FELL by 5.0 per cent (£465) in December.
Specific car rises? Eyes continued to be opened…
• Small Hatchback Fleet sector: UP 10.6 per cent
• Large Family Fleet sector: UP 10.5 per cent
• Soft-Roader Fleet sector: UP 16.3 per cent
• Compact Executive Dealer sector: UP 8.0 per cent
• MPV Dealer sector: UP 7.5 per cent
• Off-roader Dealer sector: UP 26.2 per cent