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2019 UK used car sales

Britain’s most popular used cars in 2019 revealed

2019 UK used car sales

Although 2019 was a year of declining new car sales, the used car market was more positive. Almost 8 million used cars changed hands in 2019, a figure barely changed on 2018 – meaning the British secondhand car market remains around three and a half times BIGGER than that for new cars.  

Couple searching for a used car

Figures from trade body the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) show sales of newer ‘Euro 6’ cars sold since 2015 (they have the cleanest emissions and are exempt from upcoming Low Emissions Zone (LEZ) restrictions) grew 32.5 percent. Electric car sales rose 21.8 percent, albeit taking just 0.2 percent of the market; diesel, surprisingly, fell just 0.6 percent.

But which are the UK’s most popular used cars? Here, we run through the 20 most searched for secondhand cars British motorists are buying

20. Vauxhall Zafira

Vauxhall Zafira

People carriers have fallen out of favour in recent years and Vauxhall no longer sells new versions of the seven-seat Zafira Tourer. But the Zafira MPV line-up still has a decent used car following, making the top 20 most purchased secondhand cars in 2019.

Search for a used Vauxhall Zafira on Auto Trader

19. Ford Mondeo

Ford Mondeo

British buyers also no longer favour large cars without a premium-brand badge. The BMW 3 Series has taken over the market Ford’s Mondeo once had a stronghold on, explaining its fall down the rankings on the used car market.

Search for a used Ford Mondeo on Auto Trader

18. Fiat 500

Fiat 500

The popular Fiat 500 is a small, stylish three-door city car that’s been on sale for a few years now, explaining why there are growing numbers changing hands on the used car market.

Search for a used Fiat 500 on Auto Trader

17. Mercedes-Benz A-Class

Mercedes-Benz A-Class

A regular new car top-10 best-seller, the Mercedes-Benz A-Class is a good used car buy for those who want a premium-branded alternative to a Ford Focus (and don’t mind trading a bit of interior space along the way).

Search for a used Mercedes-Benz A-Class on Auto Trader

16. Honda Civic

Honda Civic

The British-built Honda Civic is a super-reliable family hatchback that has a good reputation amongst used car buyers. The high-performance Civic Type R is particularly sought-after.  

Search for a used Honda Civic on Auto Trader

15. Toyota Yaris

Toyota Yaris

Speaking of ultra-reliable… the Toyota Yaris is a brilliantly dependable supermini small car that even offers a fuel-sipping, low-emissions hybrid variant.

Search for a used Toyota Yaris on Auto Trader

14. Audi A4

Audi A4

Remember we mentioned the Ford Mondeo? Even the Audi A4, another rival, is more popular amongst secondhand car buyers. Most used A4 models are TDI diesels, reflecting the fuel’s popularity when it was new.

Search for a used Audi A4 on Auto Trader

13. Nissan Qashqai

Nissan Qashqai

The Nissan Qashqai was a pivotal model for the Japanese brand with a second home in Britain. The world’s first crossover SUV, it kickstarted the fortunes of the company here in the UK and is now a regular on the used car shopping lists of UK families.

Search for a used Nissan Qashqai on Auto Trader

12. BMW 1 Series

BMW 1 Series

The BMW 1 Series has a premium badge and is great to drive, but it isn’t the most practical of five-door family hatchbacks. Twentysomethings like it, trading up from their first budget car into something more stylish – it has a great image but isn’t too expensive to buy or run.

Search for a used BMW 1 Series on Auto Trader

11. Mercedes-Benz C-Class

Mercedes-Benz C-Class

Another popular choice for families who may previously have purchased a Ford Mondeo is the Mercedes-Benz C-Class. Offered as a saloon, estate, coupe and convertible, there really is a model for everyone.

Search for a used Mercedes-Benz C-Class on Auto Trader

10. Renault Clio

Renault Clio

The ever-popular Renault Clio has been Britain’s favourite Renault for decades and shows no signs of falling out of favour any time soon.

Search for a used Renault Clio on Auto Trader

9. Audi A3

Audi A3

The Audi A3 is another German alternative to the BMW 1 Series and Mercedes-Benz A-Class. It is very popular amongst new car buyers, meaning there is plenty of choice on the secondhand car market.

Search for a used Audi A3 on Auto Trader

8. Volkswagen Polo

Volkswagen Polo

British car buyers love their supermini small cars and, helped by brilliant marketing campaigns over the years, the Volkswagen Polo is a used car buy that’s always in favour.

Search for a used Volkswagen Polo on Auto Trader

7. Mini

Mini

The perennially popular Mini is arguably the world’s most successfully remastered retro car. The firm encourages personalisation when new, meaning the variety of choice on the used car market is enormous. It’s a fun process searching for a used example!

Search for a used Mini on Auto Trader

6. BMW 3 Series

BMW 3 Series

Used car marketplaces such as Auto Trader regularly report the BMW 3 Series is one of the most searched-for used cars. Its popularity is proven by it sitting just behind Britain’s regular top-5 used car buys. Which are…

Search for a used BMW 3 Series on Auto Trader

5. Vauxhall Astra

Vauxhall Astra

In fifth place, it’s the Vauxhall Astra family hatchback. Thousands are sold each and every month, so there are lots available secondhand and over 240,000 changed hands last year. However, in recent years, an arch-rival has proven more popular with new car buyers…

Search for a used Vauxhall Astra on Auto Trader

4. Volkswagen Golf

Volkswagen Golf

… That car is the Volkswagen Golf – which for some months in recent years, has been Britain’s best-selling new car of all. The choice on the secondhand car market is vast: there are regularly well over 10,000 for sale at any one time on Auto Trader and used car buyers bought 260,000 of them last year.

Search for a used Volkswagen Golf on Auto Trader

3. Ford Focus

Ford Focus

For decades, the Ford Focus has been a go-to hatchback for growing families. The range encompasses every option with the high-performance Focus ST and RS models proving particularly sought-after. Secondhand Ford Focus sales topped 293,000 last year.

Search for a used Ford Focus on Auto Trader

2. Vauxhall Corsa

Vauxhall Corsa

The favourite type of car for British buyers is the city-friendly supermini hatchback. The Vauxhall Corsa has been on sale since back in 1993 and is thus a familiar sight on the used car market. Almost 300,000 were sold in 2019.

Search for a used Vauxhall Corsa on Auto Trader

1. Ford Fiesta

Ford Fiesta

And the most popular used car of all? Why, the car that’s also regularly our favourite new car, the Ford Fiesta. It’s been part of the British landscape since way back in 1976 and is the go-to model for secondhand car buyers, with a staggering 351,767 used Ford Fiestas changing hands in 2019.

Search for a used Ford Fiesta on Auto Trader

The used car market ‘remained solid‘ in 2019

Used car sales 2019

Used car sales figures for the fourth quarter of 2019 have been revealed. The final half of the year saw a recovery from poor performances early on compared with 2018. The year ended just 0.1 percent down in transactions terms. 

Indeed, used car sales were up year-on-year in the fourth quarter of 2019, compared with 2018. A total of 1,804,343 transactions plays 1,762,493, giving 2019’s period a 2.4 percent lead on the year before. Overall, 2019 was down just 9,935 transactions on 2018, for the whole year.

Used car sales 2019

The last half of 2019 showed two quarters of growth – the first growth after nine straight quarters of decline. November and December overall showed their best performance in terms of sales, since 2016. Could that be Brexit hysteria blowing over?

“It is encouraging to see used car sales return to growth in the latter part of 2019 after a prolonged period of decline, and we need to see a similar rebound in new car sales if we are to meet environmental targets,” said Mike Hawes, SMMT chief executive. 

“A buoyant used car market is necessary to maintain strong residual values and, clearly, it is now outperforming the new car market.

What cars sold in 2019?

Used car sales 2019

In terms of what is selling, diesel sales were down just 0.6 percent in 2019, taking a 41.7 percent market share with 3,297,953 transactions. Petrol sales also fell by 0.3 percent, to 4,494,611 transactions. 

Surprise surprise, alternative fuel vehicles (AFVs), combining hybrid, plug-in and all-electric models, were up by 23.4 percent. A total of 135,516 AFVs changed hands last year, accounting for 1.7 percent of used car sales overall. 

Used car sales 2019

The latest cleanest cars that adhere to a Euro 6 emissions standard changed hands on the used market a lot more in 2019, with a 32.5 percent increase. In 2019, used car prices remained firm, with the average rising 0.6 percent, to £12,800.

The most popular class of car was supermini, reflecting the new car market. They maintained their 2018 performance, with a commanding 32.8 percent market share. The lower-medium and upper-medium took second and third place respectively. They took a respective 27 and 11.8 percent of the market share. Both, however, were down, by a respective 0.8 percent and 5.8 percent. 

What were the most popular colours for used cars?

Used car sales 2019

Black took the top spot as the most popular colour in 2019, gaining an extra 1.4 percent of the market share with 1.6 million sales. Silver and blue were second and third, while grey trailed in fourth with 1.1 million sales.

That said, grey was the most popular new car colour, so it’s expected to rise in the used car market in the years to come. Pink, weirdly, was the fastest grower, jumping 14.2 percent, to a still-minimal 5,098 units shifted.

2020 Bentley Flying Spur

The cheap alternatives to the ‘world’s best luxury sedan’

2020 Bentley Flying Spur

‘Deliveries of world’s best luxury sedan underway.’ Bentley isn’t backward in coming forward as it announces the first customer deliveries of the all-new Flying Spur.

There are two things to pick out from this. First, ‘sedan’ isn’t a word we tend to use to describe four-door saloons. They’re saloons, plain and simple.

Second, that’s quite a claim. Self-proclaiming something to be the ‘world’s best‘ at anything is a little too high street for our tastes. ‘World’s best cup of coffee’, ‘world’s best kebab’ or ‘world’s best fish and chips’ – all fine, if a little hard to substantiate. But ‘world’s best sedan’ – has anybody consulted Rolls-Royce?

‘The all-new Bentley Flying Spur is the ultimate luxury Grand Touring sedan, offering the perfect fusion of performance-orientated agility and exclusive four-door, limousine-style comfort,’ says Bentley.

Notice the use of ‘ultimate luxury’ – Bentley is determined to ram home the ‘world’s best‘ angle. Still, you might expect the ultimate luxury for £168,300.

But what if you haven’t got the equivalent of a mortgage to spend on a luxury saloon? What if you haven’t even got 10 percent of the cash you’d need for an entry-level Flying Spur? 

We can’t offer the perfect fusion of anything, but here’s a selection of four-door saloons that are available for less than £1,683. That’s 1 percent of the value of a Flying Spur. And you won’t even have to visit a Bentley dealer or apply any self-tanning lotion.

Toyota Camry V6

Toyota Camry V6

The Toyota Camry is one of the world’s most successful saloons. It’s particularly popular in America, where the combination of a smooth engine, ice-cold air conditioning, large cupholders and near-faultless reliability make it the choice of a nation. Or at least those who don’t drive a pick-up. Or an SUV. Or an Accord.

Over here, old versions of the Toyota Camry were more of an acquired taste. Company car drivers like to go around corners and avoid daily visits to the petrol station, which meant the Camry failed to feature on many fleet lists. The only thing faster than the depreciation was the Camry V6’s fuel needle.

Today, the combination of general apathy, crippling fuel economy and the anonymous styling means you can buy a really tidy Camry V6 for £1,000. Others cost even less… 

Buy a used Toyota Camry on Auto Trader

Lexus IS 200

Lexus IS 200

If the Lexus LS 400 is the ‘Japanese S-Class’, the IS 200 must be the ‘Japanese 3 Series’. It offers rear-wheel-drive dynamics, a smooth six-cylinder engine, a rather special cabin and some eye-catching dials designed to resemble a chronometer. The rear lights are also rather cool, although they spawned some aftermarket copy-cats of questionable taste.

It’s as nice to drive as a BMW 3 Series, while the build quality is more than a match for its contemporary German rivals. Only the Alan Partridge connection might deter some buyers.

Prices start from £500 for an MOT failure, but £1,000 should secure a serviceable example. A-ha!

Buy a used Lexus IS 200 on Auto Trader

Volvo S80

Volvo S80

If you’re someone who hates leaving the comfort of the living room, the Volvo S80 is the car for you. The seats are more nicer than anything you’d find in the DFS sale, while the carpets are sumptuous enough for you to consider driving barefoot. To criticise the S80 for being boring would be missing the point – this car was designed to waft.

Because you’re only paying pennies for your ultimate luxury saloon, we’d recommend the 4.4-litre V8, which is powerful enough to propel the Swedish lounge to 62mph in 6.5 seconds. At least you’ll be feeling relaxed and refreshed as you enter the petrol station for the umpteenth time this week.

Prices start from £1,000, although you won’t find any 3.2 or 4.4-litre models for one percent of the price of a Flying Spur.

Buy a used Volvo S80 on Auto Trader

Chevrolet Epica

Chevrolet Epica

There are fewer than 150 Chevrolet Epicas on the roads of Britain. That’s around a quarter of the number of Bentley Flying Spurs, so some degree of exclusivity is guaranteed. Stick that in your machine-polished pipe and smoke it.

You don’t need to tell anyone at the tanning salon that it’s little more than a rebadged Daewoo. Opt for the straight-six petrol engine unless you fancy touring the streets of Knutsford like a low-rent taxi. Get the LT spec, as this adds climate control, rear parking sensors, heated leather seats, auto wipers, auto-dimming rear-view mirror, a CD auto-changer, 17-inch rims and an electric driver’s seat to an already long list of standard equipment.

Prices start from £1,250. Why buy a Flying Spur when you drive something Epica?

Buy a used Chevrolet Epica on Auto Trader

Hyundai Sonata

Hyundai Sonata V6

The Hyundai Sonata is in the news thanks to that Super Bowl ad starring John Krasinski. The new sedan looks kinda cool, but although it’s cheaper than a new Flying Spur, it doesn’t fit our Super Budget. Besides, it’s been a while since the Sonata was available in the UK.

Back at the turn of the millennium, you’d invariably find the Sonata in one of two places: in a garden centre car park or parked on a driveway outside a bungalow in a provincial seaside town. Although there are other engines available, the V6 is the one you want if you’re hoping to fuse some performance-orientated agility.

If you like the feeling of saggy leather and fake wood, the Sonata is more desirable than a new Bentley. Prices start from around £600, which is the cost of a Bentley travel bag. You pays yer money and takes yer choice.

Buy a used Hyundai Sonata on Auto Trader

Not convinced by our left-field and alternative saloons? Auto Trader is awash with BMW, Mercedes-Benz, Jaguar and Audi saloons available for 1 percent of the price of a new Flying Spur. Take a look for yourself.

Half of drivers want to buy an electrified car

Volkswagen electric car production

Almost half of Britain’s used car buyers would buy an electric, hybrid or plug-in hybrid car if they could.

That’s according to a new study, which suggests that the desire to buy a petrol or diesel car is diminishing.

Indeed, while 49 percent of buyers fancy going green, just 32 percent would like a petrol car. There’s worse news for the diesel car, with just 19 percent of those surveyed claiming they want an oil-burner.

Price remains the biggest barrier to entry, with buyers claiming the high cost of electric cars stops them from taking the plunge. Running costs and style are the other considerations.

CarFinance 247 CEO Louis Rix said: “Drivers definitely want to be more green because they care about the planet. Electric and hybrid cars will undoubtedly be a huge area of growth in future. 

“But price is still the main consideration for most customers, so eco-friendly cars need to become cheaper and more plentiful before they really take off in the second-hand market.” 

Electrified avenue

Audi Q5 plug-in hybrid

Being more specific, what’s the UK’s most desirable used car, according to the survey? It’s a metallic black Audi plug-in hybrid, which suggests there could be strong demand for the Q5 TFSI e. The Q5 plug-in hybrid offers up to 26 miles of all-electric range.

The family SUV will soon be joined by plug-in hybrid versions of the A6, A7 and A8.

As for equipment, the most desired feature is satellite navigation, followed by self-parking, a rear-view camera, in-car wi-fi and heated seats.

Top 10 most desired used cars

  1. Audi
  2. BMW
  3. Ford
  4. Mercedes-Benz
  5. Range Rover
  6. Volkswagen
  7. Aston Martin
  8. Jaguar
  9. Toyota
  10. Tesla

Top 10 most desired colours

  1. Black
  2. Silver
  3. Blue
  4. Red
  5. White
  6. Dark blue
  7. Gold
  8. Green
  9. Yellow
  10. Brown

We’ll leave you with the thought that one in five motorists have had sex in their car. Might be worth considering that when you’re choosing your next used car…

The average used car costs £12,800 – so here’s what we’d buy

Average price of a used car in 2019

According to Auto Trader, the average price of a used car in 2019 was £12,800. To put it another way, that’s roughly the same as an entry-level 2020 Hyundai i10 with a five-year/unlimited mileage warranty.

It’s easy to see why somebody might decide to go down the pre-owned route rather than choosing to drive a warranty on wheels.

The risk of sitting in a seat that might contain traces of dead skin, bodily fluids and nasal extract is outweighed by securing something with more toys, greater space and the feeling that somebody else has taken care of the depreciation curve.

So what if the boot smells of damp dog, there’s a questionable stain on the upholstery and the alloy wheels have taken more knocks than a front door? That new car smell is overrated – and is likely to be killing you softly with its scent anyway.

I’ll be honest: £12,800 is roughly £12,300 more than I’d normally spend on a used car. I get the most joy out of buying – and occasionally saving – cars that have one foot in the grave. Cars that without my intervention would have gone directly to the scrapyard – without collecting £200 on the way.

But it got me thinking. What can you buy for £12,800? Never one to miss a chance to peruse the pages of Auto Trader, I selected six popular body styles to see what’s available for the price of a boggo Hyundai i10. Here’s what I found.

Convertible: Mazda MX-5

2017 Mazda MX-5

This is far more exciting than a Hyundai i10. Unless you can see the whites of the vendor’s eyes, I don’t really buy into the whole ‘one-owner‘ thing. For all you know, the owner may have a thing for riding the clutch and revving to the redline before the engine is warmed up.

Having said that, a 2017 Mazda MX-5 1.5 with 6,774 miles on the clock is very appealing. Because the answer is always the Mazda MX-5, right?

Coupe: Audi A5

2013 Audi A5

Do not adjust your set: this 2013 Audi A5 Black Edition is indeed white.  The specification is impressive and includes leather seats, a Bang & Olufsen sound system, xenon headlights and Black Edition upgrades. The model was based on the ever-popular S Line trim.

Today, you’d spend upwards of £38,410 on an A5 Black Edition, so this is your chance to save £20,000.

Estate: BMW 5 Series Touring

2015 BMW 5 Series Touring

If you only buy one car in 2020, make sure it’s a BMW 5 Series Touring. While the general public flock like sheep to the ever widening range of crossovers and SUVs, the 5 Series Touring is arguably all the family car you could ever need.

The boot is large enough for the trip to Ikea, it drives like a saloon car, and it has more class than any crossover you could mention. Because it’s a 520d, you also won’t be on first-name terms with the cashier at your local BP.

MPV: Vauxhall Zafira

2017 Vauxhall Zafira

Remember when MPVs ruled the playgroup car park? These days, five- and seven-seat SUVs have taken over, which means pre-abused MPVs are available at rock-bottom prices. Take this 2017 Vauxhall Zafira. It might be as dull as the colour of the paint job would suggest, but the 1.4-litre turbocharged engine is surprisingly good and it offers proper seven-seat practicality.

It would have cost near-enough double the asking price in 2017, and yet’s it covered a mere 16,585 miles. The chances are it’s still covered by Vauxhall’s warranty, too.

SUV: Porsche Cayenne

2010 Porsche Cayenne

There are hundreds of crossovers and SUVs available for £12,800. Some are nearly-new compact boreboxes still under warranty, while others are leggy large SUVs that have financial disaster written all over them. Not literally, because that would be a poor sales tactic.

There are so many SUVs on Auto Trader, I reached the maximum amount I could view before the site told me to stop. Which is just as well, as I was beginning to slip into a coma. The ad for this 2010 Porsche Cayenne says it’s ‘One of the cheapest new shape Cayenne in the country!! There is no catch. It really is a great deal’. Do you feel lucky?

Saloon: Jaguar XJ

2012 Jaguar XJ

Why buy a basic Korean runabout when you can own a slice of British luxury? The registration plate on this 2012 Jaguar XJ would suggest it could have been a dealer demonstrator, management vehicle or press car. Whatever, it’s a lot of car for the money.

Unlike most luxury saloons, the XJ is as good to drive as it to waft along in the back like some high-ranking government official or Jaguar-sponsored celebrity. 

Not liking any of these choices? Use our handy Auto Trader widget on the right to find your next used car.

 

How to write the perfect used car advert

How to write the perfect used car advert

Writing a used car advert might sound simple, but you’d be surprised how many people get it wrong. You might have a perfect used car, but if the advert isn’t up to scratch, you’re not maximising its potential.

At best, it might take a little while longer for your car to sell. At worst, you could be missing out on hundreds of buyers who are keen to part with their cash.

You don’t have to be an ace salesperson or an award-winning writer to prepare a compelling used car advert, but there are some simple things to remember. If nothing else, be honest – it’s illegal to wrongly describe a used car.

At the very least, the advert should encourage people to pick up the phone or drop you an email to arrange a visit and/or test drive. If it’s a popular car, you’ll be competing for attention alongside other cars of a similar specification and price, so don’t be afraid to give it the ‘big sell’.

Some elements to include on a used car advert

Writing a used car advert

  • Make and model
    • For example: Ford Focus. Also include the trim level, e.g. Zetec, especially if it’s a special edition.
  • Year of registration
    • Include the letter or number, i.e. Y-reg or 2001. This could be important from a VED (road tax) perspective and also for buyers looking for facelift/refreshed models.
  • Engine size and type of fuel
    • For example: 2.0-litre TDCi diesel or 1.2-litre PureTech petrol.
  • Equipment
    • Create a list of the options and accessories fitted to the car. Concentrate on the big ticket items, such as air conditioning, leather seats, infotainment system, LED headlights, heated seats, etc.
  • Mileage
    • Be honest about the mileage, because it can be looked up online. Some buyers will be actively looking for low-mileage vehicles.
  • Owners
    • List how many owners the car has had, including yourself.
  • Warranty
    • State whether the car is still covered by a manufacturer’s warranty. If not, list any details of an aftermarket warranty, if applicable.
  • MOT
    • List the date when the MOT expires. If it’s due within a couple of months, it makes sense to get it tested prior to selling the car, as this will maximise the price you achieve. Alternatively, say you’ll provide a fresh MOT upon sale.
  • Service history
    • Buyers will pay more for service history, so make sure you include this in the ad. Be aware that full service history means that the car has been maintained to the manufacturer’s recommended schedule – if it hasn’t, it’s only part service history. A stamped service book complemented by receipts is always preferable.
  • The price
    • The price is essential, but don’t worry about adding ‘ono’ (or nearest offer) because buyers will be keen to negotiate anyway. Listing the car as ‘no offers’ could deter some buyers. Similarly, using ‘POA’ (price on application) is a no-no, as this irritates many buyers. Do your homework and find a price that’s suitable.
  • Contact details
    • Add your mobile number and email address, along with any times that are best to call or to avoid. Be prepared to answer any questions. One thing that’s often overlooked is that people will be more inclined to buy the car if the seller is polite and courteous. Be nice!

Other things to consider

The aforementioned items are the basic elements of a used car advert, but you might want to list any known faults or any significant damage to the bodywork. Most used car buyers will expect a few stone chips or scratches, so don’t go overboard.

This is also an opportunity to elevate your car above the thousands of other vehicles available online. If it has a full set of nearly-new premium tyres, say so, being sure to include the brand name. Mention if it has had a recent service, including expensive jobs, such as the gearbox, clutch or cambelt.

Avoid waffle. Auto Trader recommends between 50 and 75 words for an online ad, but you can adjust this accordingly. If it’s a rare, classic or exotic car, the buyer will be keen to discover more about it.

GR8 motor, M8

You should also avoid abbreviations and cliches. While some of the common abbreviations, such as ‘AC’ (air conditioning) and ‘FSH’ (full service history) are well known, others might give the impression that you’re a trader.

Cliches are another thing to avoid. ‘Future classic’, ‘tastefully modified’ and ‘first to see will buy’ are pointless and irrelevant. Oh, and avoid BLOCK CAPITALS, as it looks like you’re shouting at the buyer.

When you’re finished, stick the words through a spell checker, strip away any evidence of text speak and ask a friend or family member to check the advert.

This advice assumes that you’ve taken a decent selection of photographs and you’ve selected the right channel for your used car advert. For more information, visit our guide to advertising your car for sale. Good luck.

The cheapest and most expensive places to buy a used car

Cheapest and most expensive used cars

A new study has revealed some surprising regional variations in the price of a typical used car. Indeed, you could save thousands of pounds by travelling further afield.

There’s no north-south divide as such, but the research would suggest that heading north could bag you a good deal.

Three of the top five cheapest locations are in Scotland, namely Kilwinning, Kilmarnock and Prestwick. This would suggest Elvis Presley was searching for a great deal on a used car when he stopped by in 1960.

Gloucester and Wellingborough are the other two locations named as being great for cheap used cars.

Conversely, there’s a definite south-east bias when it comes to expensive used cars, with Chelmsford, Chatham and Acton named as places to avoid when hunting for deals.

Orgreave and Winsford are the other two locations named in the ATS Euromaster study.

You could save thousands

Cazoo 'Amazon' for used cars

Looking for some evidence? The research shows that a BMW 3 Series with 35,000 miles on the clock costs an average of £15,995 in Kirkcaldy. Meanwhile, the same car in Newton-le-Willows could cost £21,600.

Similarly, a 2015 Land Rover Discovery Sport with 38,000 miles on the clock might cost £19,495 in Kirkcaldy, but £22,500 in Chelmsford.

It goes without saying that the more commonplace the car, the greater the chance of finding a good deal. Vendors will be forced into offering discounts if the same car can be secured elsewhere for a lower price. Either that or they’ll have to put up with the car remaining on sale for a longer period of time.

As the UK’s most popular new car, there’s a ready supply of used Ford Fiestas on the market. Finding the right colour, spec and condition should be easy – just be prepared to travel.

The ATS Euromaster research found that Greater London has the greatest number of Fiestas listed at any one time. On average, there will be 200 Fiestas for sale in the area, with Poplar seeing the largest concentration.

The most expensive area for a Fiesta is Billericay in Essex. Alternatively, 30 miles up the road is the town of Layer de la Haye – the cheapest place for a Fiesta.

Click here to see more results from the ATS Euromaster study.

Revealed: the fastest-selling used cars of 2019

Fastest-selling used cars 2019

Before we launch headlong into a new decade, there’s still time to take a retrospective look at the motoring scene of 2019. Here, we reveal the fastest-selling used cars on the AA website. In other words, these are the cars that spent the shortest time for sale. If you fancy one of these motors, don’t delay – phone today.

10. Volkswagen Tiguan

Fastest-selling used cars 2019

Predictably, the top 10 contains a fair number of SUVs. We kick off with the Volkswagen Tiguan – one of Europe’s most popular 4x4s. What makes this all the more remarkable is the fact that the Tiguan shares its platform with the cheaper – and just as good – Skoda Kodiaq and Seat Tarraco. That’s the power of the brand.

New, a Volkswagen Tiguan costs upwards of £25,000. Meanwhile, used examples on the AA website are available from £3,500. That’s based on a 2009 Tiguan 2.0 TDI Sport with 119,000 miles on the clock.

9. Ford Fiesta

Fastest-selling used cars 2019

The Ford Fiesta is the best-selling used car on the AA website, but it finishes ninth on the list of the fastest-selling used cars. The fact that it’s Britain’s most popular new car means that you can afford to be picky when searching for a used example.

Turn to the AA website and you’ll find everything from a 2004 Ford Fiesta 1.25 Finesse for £695 to a 2019 ST-3 for £20,699. New prices start from a smidgen under £16,000, so you’ll save a packet – not to mention a short wait – by buying used.

8. Mercedes-Benz GLA

Fastest-selling used cars 2019

The Mercedes-Benz GLA is an A-Class on stilts, designed for people who can’t decide between a hatchback and a compact SUV. It’s more expensive than the standard A-Class, but that hasn’t stopped it being among the fastest-selling used cars of 2019.

The earliest examples have dropped below £10,000, which might explain the increased demand. In truth, there are two available for a four-figure sum – one has 165,000 miles on the clock, the other has covered 135,000. A more realistic price is £12,500 for a 2014 car.

7. Renault Clio

Fastest-selling used cars 2019

The Renault Clio has been on sale since 1990, so there are plenty to choose from in the UK. The earliest examples are becoming classics in their own right, so buying a Clio II or Clio III will ensure you get the most supermini for your money.

A new Renault Clio was unveiled at last year’s Geneva Motor Show. Despite appearances, it represents a massive step forward over the old model. It’s too new to appear on the AA used car website, but you will find Clios from as little as £800. Be quick, because on this evidence, the best Clios won’t hang around for long.

6. Ford Kuga

Fastest-selling used cars 2019

The replacement for the current Ford Kuga is long overdue. Thankfully, the new Kuga arrives this year, but old models remain in demand. A combination of low running costs, a long list of standard equipment and keen pricing makes the Kuga an incredibly popular used buy.

If you’re prepared to put up with high miles and a sketchy service history, early examples start from around £3,500. That gets you a 2009 car with 156,000 miles on the clock. Alternatively, nearly-new examples cost as much as £29,000, but it should be possible to negotiate a good deal, as dealers will be keen to shift stock ahead of the new car.

5. Kia Sportage

Fastest-selling used cars 2019

It’s not difficult to see why the Kia Sportage is such a popular used car. Buyers love its practicality, value for money and seven-year warranty. Indeed, even a Sportage registered in 2014 will be covered by the manufacturer’s warranty, assuming it hasn’t covered more than 100,000 miles.

There are around 1,200 for sale on the AA used car website, with early versions available for £1,500 to £2,000. You’ll need to part with at least £5,000 for the much improved fourth-generation Sportage, or £10,000 for the current model.

4. Ford Ecosport

Fastest-selling used cars 2019

There’s no accounting for taste. The Ford Ecosport sits on the lowest rung of the compact crossover ladder, but that hasn’t stopped it from being one of the fastest-selling used cars of 2019. The British public must have a thing for side-hinged tailgates and oddball styling.

New, you’ll spend upwards of £18,650 on a Ford Ecosport, but used prices start from £6,750. There are 780 to choose from on the AA website, so you can afford to be picky. Alternatively, wait for the new Ford Puma, which is likely to be a far better car. We’re driving it next week…

3. BMW 116

Fastest-selling used cars 2019

The AA is being very specific here, because it’s the BMW 116 rather than the entire 1 Series range up next. Amazingly, prices start from £1,000, although that’s for a 2004 car with 159,000 miles on the clock. Even so, perfectly serviceable examples are available for less than £2,000.

James Fairclough, CEO of AA Cars, said: “Some cars are being sold within a very short period of time after being advertised because they are very popular, or because there are fewer on the market. However, it is important not to rush into buying as it’s impossible to know if everything is in perfect working order without a pre-sale vehicle inspection.”

2. Volkswagen Polo

Fastest-selling used cars 2019

There’s a Volkswagen Polo to suit all pockets. From an insurance-friendly first car for £750 to a nearly-new GTI for £23,000, you’ll find a wide range of Polos for some on the AA used car website.

James Fairclough added: “If you are set on owning a certain model but you are worried it may not be in full working order, it’s definitely worth considering a pre-sale vehicle inspection from a service such as ours to give you peace of mind.”

1. Hyundai Tucson

Fastest-selling used cars 2019

This might come as a surprise, because the fastest-selling used car on the AA website wasn’t a hot hatch, sports car or desirable supermini. Instead, it was the venerable Hyundai Tucson. Why is it so popular?

A five-year/unlimited mileage warranty certainly helps, as does a long list of standard equipment. The Hyundai Tucson is also spacious and has a good reputation for reliability. Still want that Nissan Qashqai?

‘Amazon for cars’: new start-up delivers used cars to your door

Cazoo 'Amazon' for used cars

A new used car marketplace from the man who created LoveFilm and Zoopla launches today. Cazoo aims to make buying a used car simpler.

The entire process of buying from Cazoo is online, with home delivery offered. The difference here is that Cazoo actually owns all the cars it stocks, with each prepared and readied for sale at its 55-acre facility in the Midlands.

Each car is MOTed, comes with service history and goes through a 150-point check as it comes into stock.  Cazoo says it wants to ‘Amazon’ the used car market.

Buying sight unseen – how will it work?Cazoo 'Amazon' for used cars

Buying a car without inspecting it in person is usually seen as risky.

Cazoo wants to remedy this by offering the most comprehensive advertisements, with the lowest possible prices. Each ad has high-quality 360-degree images, with the car’s full specification and history included. The prices are fixed and the adverts are transparent, in an attempt to keep everything upfront.

If you buy, your new purchase should arrive within three days. After that, Cazoo has a seven-day money-back guarantee, to ‘replace the seven-minute test drive around the block’. If it’s not working for you, they’ll collect the car for free, no questions asked.

Cazoo 'Amazon' for used cars

“Used cars are one of the last remaining consumer markets yet to benefit from any digital transformation,” said Alex Chesterman, founder and CEO of Cazoo.

“Cazoo makes used car buying simple and convenient like buying any other product online today. We take away the need to travel, to haggle, to spend countless hours at a dealership and to risk any buyer’s remorse.”

The company announced another £25 million of funding today. The venture now has £80 million behind it, making it one of the UK’s best-funded new businesses ever.

‘Nearly new’ is the most popular age of car to buy

Nearly new most popular used cars

A new survey reveals that 74 percent of cars purchased are second-hand. Of the 15,000 people questioned in the AA-Populus poll, 25 percent had bought pre-owned over five years old, while 26 percent said they’d opted for a brand new car. However, it’s the ‘nearly-new’ category that came out top.

In total, 29 percent said they’d bought a nearly-new car, which is defined as being less than three years old.

Nearly new most popular used cars

The rise in popularity of car finance, particularly PCP deals, has led to a massive influx of nearly-new stock on the used market. The average age of pre-owned cars is going down, with the average price going up. It means that more car buyers could potentially find what they’d look for in a brand new car on the pre-owned lot.

“The growing popularity of car finance is changing the shape of the car market as a whole,” said James Fairclough, CEO of AA Cars.

Nearly new most popular used cars

“It has provided a steady flow of ‘nearly new’ vehicles into the used car market. This surge in supply has improved the value and range available to used car buyers – and allowed them to snap up low-mileage, well-maintained vehicles at prices that would have been unthinkable until recently. 

“As a result, motorists now have more choice than ever – both among the huge range of cars available on the second-hand market, but also the various financing schemes open to them.”

Who is buying new cars?

Nearly new most popular used cars

More than 5,000 of respondents to the poll said they’d never bought a new car: 34 percent overall, or 32 percent of men and 37 percent of women. 

Predictably, brand new cars were least popular with young people: 64 percent said they’d not yet bought new. Just six percent said they bought new last time, and seven percent had bought nearly-new.

Scottish and Northern Irish drivers have a strong taste for ‘new car smell’, with 30 percent from these areas saying they bought new last time. New cars are less popular in the East Midlands, with just 23 percent of respondents having recently purchased one.