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Crawley is the UK’s used car hotspot of 2021

Crawley in West Sussex is this year’s used car hotspot of the UK, according to new data out today from one of the UK’s leading automotive finance companies.

Volkswagen Financial Services UK (VWFS) has financed more used cars for customers in the historic town, located 28 miles south of London and 18 miles north of Brighton, than any other town or city in the UK.

Croydon in South London and Dunfermline in Scotland complete the top three, with Slough in Berkshire and Aberdeen in Scotland also making the top five.

The other locations included in the top 10 are: Whitehaven in Cumbria, Chelmsford in Essex, Dundee in Scotland, Preston in Lancashire and Gillingham in Kent.

Used cars are currently in extraordinarily high demand due to a global shortage of semiconductors, which are needed for the production of new cars. In turn, this has significantly reduced the number of new vehicles available for buyers and inflated used car prices.

The latest data released by the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) shows that the UK’s used car market grew 108.6% in the second quarter of 2021, with more than 2.1 million cars changing hands.

This is up 6.6% on 2019 pre-pandemic levels and is the best ever Q2 performance for the used car market.

The top three cities that have seen the biggest annual growth in the number of used cars exchanging hands, according to data from Volkswagen Financial Services UK, are: Coventry, Southampton and Glasgow.

Volkswagen Financial Services UK’s data insights team can also reveal that a higher proportion of people under 30 are currently financing used cars than at any point over the past four years.

Its data shows that, at present, 32% of the used car market is made up of people younger than 30, which is more than in 2020 (27%), 2019 (23%) and 2018 (19%).

The annual number of used electric cars being financed by Volkswagen Financial Services UK customers has surged 76% from 2020 to 2021, whilst petrol and diesel cars have fallen 23% and 37% respectively.

Volkswagen Financial Services UK can also reveal that the top 10 most popular used car models that they financed this year are: Volkswagen Golf, Volkswagen Polo, Audi A3, Audi A1, Volkswagen Tiguan, Audi Q3, Å KODA Octavia, Audi Q2, Å KODA Fabia and Audi Q5.

Mike Todd, CEO at Volkswagen Financial Services UK, said: “The used car market in the UK has never been as buoyant as it is right now with supply shortages continuing to affect the new car market and it’s encouraging to see that so many young people are interested in driving used models. Used cars are typically much cheaper to buy than new cars, and there are usually shorter wait times once you’ve chosen the vehicle you want, so there are plenty of advantages to going down the used route. I think lots of people are still apprehensive about travelling on public transport, so coupled with the supply issues, we’re seeing increased demand among people looking for cheaper personal mobility options as the world gradually gets back to some kind of normality.”

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