Used car sales dipped by 0.7% year-on-year in the second quarter of this year, according to the latest figures from Experian, but were still ahead of first quarter figures.
Experian said this represented the smallest annual drop in sales for two years. Total sales for the quarter, which included private and retail, totalled 1,781,634, a 6.4 per cent rise on Q1.
The fall in sales was led by the upper medium segment (down by 5.8 per cent), followed by the sports segment (down by 2.3 per cent).
The mini and supermini categories, which include the Daewoo Matiz and the Smart Fortwo and the Vauxhall Corsa and Ford Fiesta respectively, were the only segments to buck the trend and with an increase in sales of 7.7 per cent and 2.9 per cent respectively.
When coupled with news that both hybrid and electric fuelled cars saw annual increases of 37.7 per cent and 29.7 per cent, it shows the increasing popularity of smaller, green and more fuel efficient vehicles.
Joe Myers from Experian Credit Services, said: “After hitting a ten year low in Q4 2009, when only 145,9624 used cars were sold, each quarter has seen sales rise and this is the second consecutive quarter to see an improvement.
“Although the year-on-year picture reveals a fall in sales, in context, it represents a relatively smaller drop.
“The increase in sales of cars in the mini segment and also hybrid and electric goes to show that using market intelligence to support car sales can be the key to spotting trends and really understanding the market in which you are trading.”
“Whilst the after affects of the scrappage scheme have made it tough for new car dealers, sales of used cars fell by only 0.7 per cent this quarter compared to the same period last year, which, considering the current economic climate, is really encouraging,” said Sue Robinson RMI director.
“The continued uncertainty in the market means consumers are retaining their newer vehicles until they reach the end of their warranty. There are such great incentives for consumers buying new cars that the savings on a nearly new car are less significant and therefore less alluring to consumers.”