Average car is over eight years old, study finds

Just under half a million used cars were sold in the first six months of this year, with German-made models the most popular.

According to a report carried out by Carzone.ie, some 454,823 used cars were sold between January and June of this year.

It also found the effects of the recession are still very much in evidence, with motorists holding onto cars for longer periods of time than during the boom, with the average age of a car now just over eight years old.

The Volkswagen Golf topped the list for the most searched for car brand. This was closely followed by the BMW 3 Series, BMW 5 Series, and the Audi A4, which ranked second, third, and fourth respectively.

Some 84% of searches carried out on Carzone.ie were for diesel models, indicating the desire for car buyers to further reduce their fuel bills.

However, when asked if customers would consider purchasing a hybrid or electric power model, only 2.2% indicated they would consider such a car for their next purchase.

The report is a biannual index which tracks trends in both the new and used car markets in Ireland. Data generated in the report has been compiled using the 100m searches carried out on Carzone.ie during the first six months of the year, vehicle transactions carried out on Cartell.ie, and a survey of more than 2,356 car buyers.

Of the 2,300 motorists surveyed, the top two financial concerns were rising fuel and road tax costs. A total of 42% of respondents had previously used a finance product to buy a current car, with 78% having opted for a loan with full repayments instead of personal contract plan or lease plan options.

When asked about their next car purchase, 78% said they would consider a form of car finance, with 60% saying they would take out a loan, 19% opting for a lease plan, and 13% considering a personal contract plan. Of those surveyed, just 11% had been previously turned down for car finance.

The good summer weather this year also influenced consumer trends in car sales. The heatwave in June and July prompted a flurry of searches on Carzone.ie for open-topped cars. Jun 10 was the busiest day for searches for convertible cars, with the website recording an increase of 89% compared with the same day the previous week.

Carzone.ie general manager Warren Cray said the study highlighted how healthy the used car market was currently in Ireland.

“We had an extremely busy first half of the year at Carzone.ie, with over 100m used car searches on our site between January and July.

“With over 450,000 used vehicles having changed hands, it is great to see a continued buoyant used car market in Ireland and we are confident the year-end results will be just as positive,” he said.


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