The spending total is an impressive sign of the industry’s resilience given that the credit crunch has just ‘celebrated’ its first birthday, but inevitably sales of used cars are cooling as a result of the economic downturn.
Spending on used cars was down £0.6 billion compared to 2006’s record-breaking year.
The average sales price of a used car from a franchised or non-franchised dealer was £6,464 in 2007, a rise of £198 compared to the 2006 average.
Environmental issues continue to assume increasing importance, with six per cent saying environmental considerations would be an influencing factor when they next buy, three times as many as said so in 2006.
To limit the effects of the credit crunch on their next car purchase nine per cent said they would go for a vehicle in a lower insurance group with the same number saying they would opt for a lower priced car next time round.
Report author Professor Peter Cooke commented: "The economic downturn might encourage more traditional new car buyers to either trade down to a smaller new car or buy a quality used car instead of a new one.
"Those very same buyers may well seek to buy their used car through a franchised or non-franchised used car dealer rather than deal privately."
Written by Trevor Coffee