Figures from Britain’s used car market reveal buyers are turning towards hybrid, plug-in hybrid and battery electric vehicles, suggesting a shift towards low emission alternatives.
The data released by the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) shows a 2.1% fall in purchases within the used car market.
For the year, less than eight million used vehicles changed hands, which is more than 167,000 fewer than the number (8,113,020) that did so in 2017.
In the final quarter of 2018, the pattern was much the same when compared with the corresponding months of 2017; last year, 1,762,493 used car transactions were recorded.
Although this is only a slight fall from the 1,774,832 recorded in the final quarter of 2017, the 0.7% drop follows an overall pattern seen throughout 2018.
In this marketplace, growth was enjoyed through sales of low emission alternatives such as electric, hybrid and plug-in hybrid vehicles.
In 2018, the number of sales recorded hit 106,658, which equates to a rise of more than a quarter (27%) in comparison to sales in 2017.
Sales of petrol cars dropped by 4.2% in the year; however, diesel vehicles bucked the trend seen in the new car market, holding steady with an increase of 0.3%.
What the figures do show is that low emission alternatives are coming to the fore, which will no doubt please a government that is trying to drive down emissions and pollution.
However, while Mike Hawes, SMMT Chief Executive was ‘encouraged’ by the rise in the purchase of low emission vehicles, he reiterated his thoughts in response to new vehicle registrations, urging for incentives to be put in place so drivers benefit from, and choose this technology.
He said: “It’s encouraging to see more used car buyers snapping up low emission vehicles as supply grows.
“We still need the right policies and incentives from government to give new car buyers confidence to choose the cleanest petrol, diesel and electric models that best suit their needs, so that even more drivers can benefit from this exciting technology as it filters down to the used market in the coming years.”