Used car prices plummet: best way to find out how much your car is worth
We reveal the used cars that have lost the most value, and those that have bucked the trend and saw their sale price increase.
The typical used car saw its value drop £850 in October, the biggest monthly drop in price for more than 12 years, new data has revealed.
The main reason behind the fall in used car prices is a glut of motors for sale at a time when the number of buyers is plummeting as people focus on paying their monthly bills instead – especially as we head into the expensive winter months.
While some models have been exceptionally heavy hit – losing up to an eighth of their value (13.4%) in a single month – other models have actually seen their sale price rise.
In this article, we’ll look at the best- and worst-performing cars and explain the easiest way for you to value your car online if you’re thinking of selling.
What’s happening to used car prices
Before we do, let’s just do a quick recap of the used car market so you can get a better idea of what’s happening to prices in general.
Brand new data from Cap HPI showed that, overall, values fell 4.2% in October.
That’s the biggest monthly fall since May 2011 and the biggest seen in October since the company started analysing sale prices.
Derren Martin, director of valuations at Cap HPI, explained to Car Dealer magazine that higher-end, ‘aspirational’ models have seen the biggest falls.
“We’ve seen convertibles most heavily affected,” he said.
“That is seasonal, but they are also aspirational cars. It’s that aspirational level that’s been most heavily hit.”
He added that electric vehicles were actually the best performers overall, falling around 2.4%, while all other vehicle types fell by 4% or more.
That’s an interesting reversal of trends – as we wrote back in May, it was EVs that were losing value at a far faster rate than petrol and diesel motors.
Finally, he added that he expects used car prices to keep falling until January 2024, when buyer demand might see prices flatline.
As a final note, if you are planning to sell a car that’s a couple of years old this doesn’t mean you’re going to be significantly out of pocket.
As Martin points out, used car prices are still 20% higher than at the start of 2021.
Used car prices: motors losing value fastest 2023
Looking at the specific makes and models that have seen the biggest fall in price, based on Capi HPI data.
As mentioned at the start, the reason why they’re falling is a combination of oversupply and limited interest from buyers.
All of these cars have seen their value fall by more than a tenth.
|Car model||Price drop in October 2023|
|BMW 2 Series convertible (diesel)||12.3%|
|Vauxhall Grandland X hybrid (petrol)||11.5%|
|Jaguar F-Pace (diesel)||11.4%|
|Vauxhall Grandland X||10.8%|
|BMW 2 Series convertible||10.7%|
|Mazda MX5 RF||10.7%|
|BMW 4 Series convertible||10.6%|
Used car prices: motors that have risen most in value
While cars have fallen overall, there are a handful of models that have managed to buck that trend and are now worth more despite the ongoing cost of living crisis eroding the number of prospective buyers.
|Car model||Price rise in October 2023|
|Dacia Logan diesel||6.9%|
|Mazda Mx30 (electric)||3%|
|Alfa Romeo Giulietta (diesel)||2.7%|
|Hyundai i30 (diesel)||2%|
|Mini Countryman (hybrid)||2%|
|Renault Zoe (electric)||1.9%|
How much is your car worth? Easiest way to get an instant online valuation
If you’re looking to sell your car, you’ll first want to get an idea of how much you can expect to get for your motor.
The good news is there are a load of sites where you can get an instant online valuation provided you have your reg number and mileage to hand.
Our personal favourite is the Parkers car valuation tool as it’s the only one that gives you a valuation without any need to register an account or share your email address.
It’s definitely worth getting more than one online valuation to give you a clearer picture of what your car is worth.
Every major car-buying site – the likes of Motorway, Webuyanycar, and so on – will also provide an instant valuation if you fancied trying them as well.
However, they will require you to share certain personal details including your email address and you can expect to be spammed a few times with follow-ups if you don’t sell through them.
So, if you’re not yet sure whether you want to sell or are just curious about your car’s value, we’d avoid these options for now.
Sell my car: how to start the process
If you are happy with the rough valuations you’ve received, you have three options when selling.
To get the best price, you will need to list the car yourself through on the likes of Autotrader (read our review and tips for getting the best price on Autotrader), organise viewings and field offers until you get one you’re happy with.
It’s a lot more effort, but as we say that’ll net you the most money.
At the other end of the scale, the easiest way to offload your car is to simply part exchange it and hand over the keys to the dealer you buy your new car from (read our guide to part exchange).
Sadly, this will also likely result in you getting a far lower price compared to selling it yourself.
Your final option is to sell it to one of the various car-buying sites out there.
This sits somewhere between the two options above: you’ll probably get a better price compared to part exchanging and it takes a lot less effort than selling through the likes of Autotrader.
If this option appeals, we’ve put together detailed guides on all the major car-buying sites.
Head over to our Sell My Car Guide review section to get tips on getting the best price, making the process as painless as possible, and more no matter which you choose to sell through.