The average cost of a used vehicle rose by 2.7% in December.As trading closed at British Car Auctions (BCA) at the end of 2018, used carvalues had risen by £275 to £10,141.

Seasonal market trends and the shorter trading period due toChristmas saw a little shift in the models being bought, but demand for good qualityvehicles remained high. Dealer part-exchange values remained mostly the same,but averages values for fleet, lease stock and nearly-new vehicles improved.

Reflecting steady supply/demand at BCA over the course of2018, the headline figure rose by £273 year-on-year. Commenting on the figures,BCA’s chief operating officer for UK remarketing, Stuart Pearson said:“Professional buyers were active throughout the month building forecourt stockfor the New Year and demand carried on to BCA’s digital platforms over theFestive Season. The shorter trading period and the seasonal influences on stockmix certainly created strong competition for vehicles that were ready forretail.

“With data now available for the full calendar year, it isclear the used car sector experienced sustained demand in 2018. BCA saw valuesrise steadily during 2018, with professional buyers competing strongly forstock both in-lane and via BCA Live Online.  

“Both fleet and lease and dealer part-exchange averagevalues have seen double-digit percentage increases over 2017 figures.  Nearly-new values are a third higher onaverage than in 2017.”

In December, the average fleet and lease values rose to£11,790, significantly ahead of the same month in 2017 and the third highest pointrecorded. In comparison to December 2017, average values were up 11.2% at£1,186. The retained value against a vehicle’s original MRP (ManufacturersRetail Price) fell to 44.15% (only a half a percentage point).

Average mileage and age of part-exchange vehicles also rosein December 2018. Values were on the most part consistent at £5,275 which isthe third highest value BCA have recorded for dealer stock. Year-on year valuessaw a 10.5% increase over 2018, while over ten of the past 12 months demonstrateda rise in values for nearly-new vehicles with sustained demand for them.

In comparisonto November 2018, Decembervalues improved by £490 (2.0%) and there was strong competition noted for the most desirable vehicles.The average value of £24,660 was the third highest recorded that year with anuplift of 29.5% (£5,627) from December.