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Used buyer AFV interest soars but diesel remains resilient

Used car buyers are increasingly showing interest in alternatively fuelled vehicles (AFVs) but this is largely at the expense of petrol rather than diesel. So says Auto Trader as its figures for October mark a record for AFV popularity and used prices.

Nissan LEAF charging

The Auto Trader builds on the SMMT figures showing increased user buyer interest in AFVs

Published a fortnight after figures from the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) show demand for second-hand AFVs grew at a record rate during the last quarter, the Auto Trader figures suggest a similar trend.

Over the last three months the percentage of fuel-related searches attributed to AFVs has increased from 4% in July, to 7% in October, having remained flat for 12 months prior (July 2017 – July 2018).

Despite the ongoing negative rhetoric surrounding the fuel debate, the increase in searches for AFVs has come largely at the expense of petrol rather than diesel. Whilst diesel has remained flat at 48% of fuel related searches since August 2018, petrol has dipped from 46 per cent to 45%; its lowest since March 2018.

Karolina Edwards-Smajda, Auto Trader’s director of commercial products, said: “Every possible bellwether and metric is pointing to a significant uptake in low emission cars, in both the new and the used markets. The trajectory for greater adoption is looking very promising, however, the Government’s Road to Zero ambitions are still a long way to being realised. They’re hampered by an at best confusing rhetoric that seems more focused on penalising fossil fuelled drivers, rather than rewarding those embracing new technologies.”

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Natalie Middleton

Natalie has worked as a fleet journalist for nearly 20 years, previously as assistant editor on the former Company Car magazine before joining Fleet World in 2006. Prior to this, she worked on a range of B2B titles, including Insurance Age and Insurance Day.