Sales of used EVs were boosted in January by the recent freefall in prices, according to INDICATA, a business intelligence consultancy for the automotive sector. 

Used EV prices fell by 15.3 percentage points between 1 October 2022 and 31 January 2023, which proved to be the tipping point to re-ignite interest from wholesale buyers.

EV sales

The massive price fall helped reduce Market Days’ Supply (MDS, INDICATA’s measure of marketability, the lower the better) levels by approximately one-third to 117 days in early February. However, that meant used EVs were still taking twice as long to sell as used hybrids and even longer than used ICE cars.

Used EV stock levels reached a high level on 1 January 2023 with an MDS of 161 days, up from just 40 days in August 2022 when market demand was very strong.

Despite all the interest in EVs they still only accounted for just 5.0% of UK used sales in January compared with 46.0% for petrol vehicles, the most popular fuel type, 37.3% for diesel cars and 11.7% for hybrid vehicles.

Jon Mitchell

“Just as three to four-year-old EVs were coming back into the market the level of younger cars being recycled by OEMs and their dealers increased. 

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“Simultaneously, the cost of living was rising quickly, and consumers couldn’t justify paying two to three times as much for a used EV as an ICE car,” explained Jon Mitchell, INDICATA UK’s group sales director.

“The result was a rapid fall in demand and prices as part of a major market correction. We expect a few more future adjustments as EVs establish themselves with consumers and dealers as they become an integral part of the used car mix,” he added.

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