Used EV sales soar as secondhand market enjoys bumper growth

Sales of used electric cars jumped by more than two-thirds in the first three months of the year as more buyers sought out secondhand EVs.

Data from the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) shows that sales of used EVs were up 70% in the first quarter of 2024 compared with the same period last year. A total of 41,505 secondhand electric models changed hands between January and March.

The rapid growth of the used EV segment reflects the growing range of options on the secondhand market and the rising number of buyers attracted by their more affordable nature.

EVs were the fastest growing sector in a used market that recorded its best first quarter since before the pandemic. Overall, the used market rose by 6.5%, with 1,967,923 cars finding new owners.
Other electrified options also recorded strong growth, with a 49% rise in sales of hybrids and a 42.5% increase in plug-in hybrid sales. Petrol sales rose just 7.7% while diesel fell just over 1%. EVs still represent just 2.1% of the overall market but experts predict the recent growth is likely to carry on as the market continues to mature.

Mike Hawes, SMMT chief executive, said, “A reinvigorated new car market is delivering more choice and affordability for used car buyers and, increasingly, they are choosing to go electric.

“To enable even more drivers to enjoy the benefits of zero emission motoring, ensuring both supply and demand remains robust is essential. Incentivising new EV uptake and investing in a chargepoint network that is accessible, available and affordable to all will drive the nation’s net zero transition.”

Sue Robinson, chief executive of the National Franchised Dealers Association (NFDA), added: “Strong performances can be seen in the used BEV market which continue to grow as more electric cars enter the used sector. There are encouraging signs as BEVs see a new record market share.

The used EV market will be crucial in the transition to zero emission motoring and NFDA reiterates that increasing consumer confidence through incentives and improving charging infrastructure is key.”

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Matt Allan

Matt is Editor of EV Powered. He has worked in journalism for more than 20 years and been an automotive journalist for the last decade, covering every aspect of the industry, from new model reveals and reviews to consumer and driving advice. The former motoring editor of, The Scotsman and National World, Matt has watched the EV landscape transform beyond recognition over the last 10 years and developed a passion for electric vehicles and what they mean for the future of transport - from the smallest city cars to the biggest battery-powered trucks. When he’s not driving or writing about electric cars, he’s figuring out how to convert his classic VW camper to electric power.