Dealers warned of used-car drought

A used-car specialist has warned about a dearth of used cars on the market in the near future following a slump in new-car sales brought about by the economic downturn.

Glass's Guide said the effects of the recession on the natural life cycle of the used-car industry would be felt sharply in years to come as the number of one-to-two-year-old used cars dries up.

As sales of new cars fell in 2009 and 2008, used-car dealers will find it much harder to source nearly new vehicles in the near future, Glass's Guide warned.

Adrian Rushmore, managing editor of the Guide said: "It was a situation that was prevalent following the recession of the early 1990s and it will be repeated over the next few years.

"The saving grace for dealers is that the supply of three-to-five-year-old cars will be fairly constant this year, thanks to new sales of 2.4 million in 2007, 2.3 million in 2006, and 2.4 million in 2005.

"Around 300,000 new car sales in 2009 came through scrappage, but we anticipate that many of those that have traded in a 10-year-old car are not likely to follow the typical three- to-four-year replacement cycle."

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