Car showrooms and dealerships have been open again in the UK since June and most have quite admirably been able to restructure their operations to comply with social distancing guidelines. However, just because you can buy a new car now does that mean you necessarily should?
It’s been estimated that lockdown cost the automotive industry around £61 million every day. Those are big numbers considering the industry was almost completely shut down for the best part of four months. As such, it’s in the best interest of the industry for you to buy a used or a new car right now. But is it in your best interest?
The UK is facing an extended period of economic uncertainty that is unlikely to fade anytime soon. We will be feeling the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic for many months and perhaps many years to come. In such uncertain times, splashing out on a major purchase like a car might not be seen by many as a wise move.
Whilst we wouldn’t recommend that those who are financially unstable look into getting a new car right now, for those who are a little more secure, there could be some really incredible deals to find. During lockdown, many dealerships will have found themselves with a backlog of motors and might be open to some deals they wouldn’t have ever considered in a pre-coronavirus world.
Matt Elland, Director of Direct Gap mentioned that “There are some really fantastic deals available at the moment as dealerships aim to recover from their recently enforced closure. Our research found some main dealers are offering up to 30% off list price.”
However, according to Eric Lyman, senior vice president of ALG, TrueCar’s analytical arm: “if demand continues remains strong and inventory doesn’t start getting replenished, we could see automakers pull back on incentives.”
Online sales have become much more convenient and popular in the months over lockdown as drivers have realised how much the online automotive game has evolved in recent years. Used car buyers have remained active online throughout lockdown and there is definitely an eagerness amongst buyers that has remained strong now that we are gently easing out of lockdown.
Rush in and make a snap decision right now and you might live to regret it. Even worse, buying a new car in today’s climate means you’ll be losing a large percentage of its value the moment you drive it off the forecourt. Finance, lease and contract hire gap insurance can mitigate that loss somewhat in the case of a right-off but if you actually want to keep your new car running for years to come, now might not be the best time to invest. Just be patient and see how the tides turn. Because with more people returning to work and being told to avoid public transport, it’s an industry that could do a complete 180 in the next few months.