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VW-backed used car platform expands into UK

The Heycar used car marketplace has launched in the UK, backed by Volkswagen and Daimler.

The Heycar UK leadership team

Debuted in Germany in 2017, the business – owned by VW-backed Mobility Trader Holding GmbH which saw Daimler take a stake a year ago – offers a cross-brand premium used-vehicle platform focused on selected dealers and listing vehicles that are sub eight years old, have less than 100,000 miles on the clock and come with a warranty.

In Germany, it has up an inventory of over 400,000 used cars from more than 4,000 dealerships in Germany, said to make it one of the top players in the local market.

Its launch in the UK will see it focus on offering greater trust and transparency through an inventory of over 100,000 listed vehicles from nearly 50 brands across 1,400 dealerships.

The new UK team is led by CEO Mat Moakes, who joins the new business from a role as managing director of Centrica’s digital venture, Local Heroes. Karen Hilton joins as chief commercial officer with over 10 years of automotive experience and three years in leadership roles at the disruptive start-ups Carwow and Nested. In addition, the setup has been supported by BCG Digital Ventures (BCGDV) while the brand operates in the UK under Mobility Trader UK Ltd., a wholly owned subsidiary of Mobility Trader Holding GmbH and a sister company of the German Mobility Trader GmbH.

Speaking at the Heycar launch event in London, Mat Moakes said: “The UK used car industry is worth £50bn, yet it works inefficiently for consumers and dealers. Buying a used car can be like a lottery, you don’t know what you’ll get. Existing websites are often cluttered with ads, eroding consumer trust. Dealers are burdened with rising fees for listing used cars online, squeezing their margins without a guarantee of leads or sales.

We’ve developed heycar to solve these pain points. We’ll offer a simpler, more effective solution for both used car buyers and dealers. Our site will be ad-free, improving transparency and consumer trust. heycar won’t charge dealers a listing fee, encouraging them to display all their best quality stock. After the launch phase we will charge on a lead-generation basis, guaranteeing a win-win for our dealer partners.”

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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.