The latest Pulse report from British Car Auctions has shown average values for used cars continued to rise in March, recording the highest-ever headline figure since the report began in 2005.

Average values for fleet and lease stock rose to the highest point on record too, while price performance for dealer part-exchange vehicles and nearly new vehicles improved over the month.  

Retained value against original MRP (Manufacturers Retail Price) improved by a point to 43.4%, while year-on-year values were up significantly, rising by £714 (7.3%), as both age and mileage continue to decline.

This is the second consecutive month that the headline average value has reached a record figure and, according to BCA chief operating executive, Simon Henstock, a diverse mix of stock with a lower age and mileage profile, plus steady demand from professional buyers, proved key to the growth.

“BCA reports a continued richer mix of stock in the auction halls, which is helping to keep average values firm,” he said. “Buyer demand was significant in March and conversion rates rose as a result. Reflecting seasonal patterns, we saw greater volumes from dealer part-exchange sources and expect this uplift to continue in the weeks ahead.

“However, as volumes remain high, we should expect to see the dynamics in the market change quite noticeably over the coming weeks. Easter is typically seen as a watershed in the marketplace and while demand remains strong, it has waned from the peak we experienced in March.”