Confidence surges for independent dealers as used car retail sales see best improvement since January

CONFIDENCE has grown among independent used car retailers, after June saw the best sales growth since the start of the year.

Evidence of a surge in positive dealer sentiment is revealed by CAP’s monthly research among a panel of around 100 specialist independent used car dealers across the country.

The latest findings reveal a 16% increase in the number of dealers who saw an increase in sales during June, compared with the previous month.

Every other measure in the survey is positive too, with dealers also rating June 2014 better than the same month last year.

Each month CAP questions a ‘Dealer Insight Panel’ of around 100 independent used car retailers.  It is part of the research for Black Book Live, CAP Automotive’s unique real time used car trade values trending tool, used by businesses across the industry.

Other findings in the latest survey include:

  • A 20% surge in customer enquiries for used cars.

  • An 18% rise for the number of dealers describing the current business climate as positive.

  • An 18% boost in the proportion of dealers who expect further growth in the next three months.

  • A 16% increase in the number of dealers reporting less difficulty in sourcing the right kind of cars for stock.

  • A nine per cent fall in dealers describing their existing stock levels as too high.

CAP’s index of independent dealer sales is now at its highest level since last summer, when July 2013 proved to be the best month for retail sales since the index was launched in 2011.

Mike Hind, of CAP Automotive, said: “Independent dealers are the true barometer of the market because they are under no pressure to meet new car targets or focus on one particular profile of used car.

“The success being enjoyed by our dealer insight panel therefore indicates a market that is in rude health across the board.

“Based on historical performance, we’re unlikely to see such a big increase when the figures are in for this month.  But there is still every reason to expect positive results until the end of the summer, when attention will again focus more onto new cars and the new plate month of September.”