Industry reports green shoots

  17 May 2020

Auto retail executives and sales platforms are reporting a rise in activity and vehicle sales following PM Boris Johnson’s confirmation showrooms should be able to reopen from 1 June.

Vertu’s Robert Forrester said last Friday’s retail orders were “well over 100… best since lockdown started”. He confirmed very strong demand in LCVs too.

Marshall’s Daksh Gupta said the group is working on “Project Reactivation” and is readying dealerships to welcome customers: reopening dates will be confirmed soon.

Vines Group confirmed that from 13 May it has been facilitating online sales of vehicles via email and phone, for contactless ‘click and collect’ handover.

Auto Trader is launching contactless collection tools on 20 May as part of its Retail Ready initiative: more than 2,500 retailers have already begun to upload details of their measures (the service is free). Last week it reported the biggest audience since lockdown began, with a peak of well over 1 million daily visits: that’s week-on-week growth of 15%, while vehicles saved per day is actually up 58% year-on-year.

CAP HPI said data volumes in early May rose 70% compared to two weeks earlier – and head of valuations Derren Martin announced adjustments to used car values have recommenced after being frozen during lockdown due to insufficient data.

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