Market turns over an old LEAF

Riley Riley

With the demand for used cars at an all time high, it’s interesting to note what’s going on in other countries.

In the UK the fastest selling used car has been revealed as the electric LEAF, followed closely by the good old hybrid Prius, according to figures from Auto Trader’s Fastest Selling Index.

The Index, which tracks the potential speed at which vehicles will sell based on live supply and demand in the market, reflects the recent surge in demand for electric and low emission vehicles.

When the LEAF was launched here, the first fully electric car to be offered for sale locally, dealers couldn’t sell it for love of money.

In Australia, used car prices are still up more than 30 per cent since the COVID outbreak, due mainly to component shortages and the long wait times for new vehicles.

For example, a two-year-old Toyota Hilux that has been driven 15,000km a year starting in January, 2020 is worth the same figure now as the day it was driven out of the dealer’s yard new.

Sales of new electric vehicles are up 19.1 per cent, but still represent only 0.49 per cent of overall new vehicle sales.

No word on used EVs, but with so few around they would be hard to get.

Back to the UK and in addition to the Nissan Leaf, the top 10 included its French counterpart, the Renault Zoe (2018, automatic), which was 2019’s fastest selling used car.

Last year it took an average of just 20 days to leave the sales yard, making it 2021’s seventh fastest selling used car.

What’s more, two petrol-hybrids also made it onto the list: the 2016 Toyota Prius (automatic) and the 2016 Toyota Yaris (automatic), taking an average of 19 days and 20 days to sell respectively.

But demand for diesel is still strong, with 70 per cent of cars on in the top 10 diesel.

The data also shows a stunning acceleration in the average time it takes for a used EV to sell.

On average, a used EV in December sold in just 26 days, which is eight days faster than the average time it takes for a used petrol vehicle to sell (34) and four days faster than a used diesel (30).

This is a drop of 18 days from the start of 2021, where used EVs were taking an average of 44 to sell on UK yards.

Auto Trader’s Commercial Product Director, Karolina Edwards-Smajda, said the latest results were positive.

“It’s incredibly positive to see a pure electric at the top of the list for 2021 for just the second time in the seven years we’ve been tracking the fastest selling used cars,” he said.

“There’s been a real breakthrough for EVs in the UK over the last few years, but 2021 really did mark a major step forward in terms of heightened levels of demand.

“This was driven, in part, by the greater choice and availability of models, as well as the recent fuel shortage which helped to further accelerate consumer consideration.

“Although we’re still some way off EVs being financially accessible for the mass market, our data does offer another clear sign of things to come and the exciting opportunity that electric vehicles represent for the industry.”

UK top 10

Rank Make/Model Fuel & Transmission Auto Trader Retail Rating Predicted Days to Sell
1 2016 Nissan Leaf Electric – Automatic 99.96 17
2 2016 Toyota Prius Petrol Hybrid – Automatic 99.78 19
3 2016 Mazda CX-5 Diesel – Manual 99.83 19
4 2016 Peugeot 3008 Diesel – Automatic 98.17 19
5 2016 Citroen Grand C4 Picasso Diesel – Automatic 95.46 20
6 2016 Toyota Yaris Petrol Hybrid – Automatic 99.28 20
7 2018 Renault Zoe Electric – Automatic 99.72 20
8 2016 Peugeot 308 SW Diesel – Manual 96.90 21
9 2016 Nissan Qashqai Diesel – Automatic 98.51 21
10 2016 Ford Grand C-IV Diesel – Manual 98.04 21


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