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Used car sales increase amid jump in EV transactions

Date: 09 August 2023   |   Author: Sean Keywood

The number of used cars sold in the UK saw a 4.1% year-on-year increase in the second quarter of 2023, according to new figures from the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT).

The industry body said a total of 1,832,267 transactions had taken place, and attributed the growth to easing supply chain problems - although it also noted that the figure was still 9.9% down on pre-pandemic 2019.

The market saw major growth in Q2 in used EV sales, which were up by 81.8%. However, these vehicles still only made up 1.7% of sales overall, although this market share was itself a new record, and up from 1% in Q2 2022.

There were also increases in sales of used plug-in hybrids, up by 11.4%, and conventional hybrids, up by 29.5%, although conventional petrol and diesel cars together still accounted for more than 94% of the market overall.

SMMT chief executive Mike Hawes said: "It's great to see a recharged new car sector supporting demand for used cars and, in particular, helping more people to get behind the wheel of an electric vehicle. 

"Meeting the undoubted appetite for pre-owned EVs will depend on sustaining a buoyant new car market and on the provision of accessible, reliable charging infrastructure powered by affordable, green energy. 

"This, in turn, will allow more people to drive zero at a price point suited to them, helping accelerate delivery of our environmental goals."