The Portuguese used car market continues to decline, in what has been a year marked by difficulties for the sector.

According to a report by ECO, online sales to consumers, accumulated up to the end of the third quarter, were 16.3% lower than in the first nine months of the previous year. Compared to the period from January to September 2020, this drop was lower by 1.8%.

In monthly terms, the scenario is no different. Data from the latest INDICATA Observatory report points to a 16.6% decline in used car sales online in September. In year-on-year terms, sales were 18% lower than in September 2021.

The results reveal the continuation of a trend fuelled mainly by the decline in fossil fuels. While sales of diesel vehicles dropped 19% in September compared to the previous month, this fall was 23.9% year-on-year. With regard to the sale of used petrol cars, this fall was less pronounced in monthly terms in the month of September, with a drop of 13%. However, even in year-on-year terms, gasoline fell by 10.8%.

Hybrids up

In the opposite direction is the sale of hybrids, increasing 8.9% year-on-year, although falling 1% compared to August. The sale of battery electric vehicles (BEV) continues to have the best performance, with an increase of 21.1% year-on-year, or 5% compared to August.

The report notes, however, that stock levels in early October were down 4.1% from August, or 9.5% year-on-year, meaning finding quality vehicles remains an issue. Both BEV and hybrids thus remain in high demand, without sufficient supply to suppress it.

Prices up

Restrictions on the supply of used cars still lead their average price to maintain an upward trajectory. In monthly terms, the average price of a used car rose again until October, and the value has already increased by more than 7% since the beginning of the year.

The report also points to a 14% increase in the sale of newer used cars (under one-year-old), indicating “some tactical activity supported by manufacturers”, although this figure remains 36% lower than the levels of September 2021.