The increase in activity was led by the sharp increase in new van sales, which saw an all-time record of 371,830 registrations, surpassing the previous record set in 2007.
The year on year increase of 15.6% reveals that NAMA sales activity rose at over twice the level of the new van market, something that NAMA attributes to changes in stocking policies across many franchised dealer; “The success of the new van market appears to have seen many franchised dealers focus their activity on the new – two year market,” explained NAMA’s Louise Wallis.
“As a result, we have seen evidence that they have traded more older part-exchange vehicles, some of which they may have retailed in recent years. Similarly, more fleets opted to dispose of vehicles through NAMA members that they had run for longer periods during the economic downturn.
While our members saw a sharp rise in overall volumes coming to auction, the average age of stock on offer increased and we saw a notable spike in stock in the four-six years age range. Importantly for the wider market, successful marketing activity saw demand for the stock on offer largely kept pace with the increase in volumes coming to market, albeit December data does reveal a 5.7% fall in first time conversion from the same period in 2014. It is too early to reflect that this is simply a seasonal issue,” she added.
As with the new van market, increased demand reflects a growing confidence in the business community. NAMA suggests that for used vans this is most likely to be driven by small businesses and sole traders.