European used car market grows on the back of improved supply

Oct 28, 2020   written by Autorola

The European used market grew by 18.4% year-on-year in September a significant improvement on August’s 10.3% growth according to insights from our latest INDICATA Market Watch 9 report.

Supply has been constricting the size of the European market, not demand, so with more balanced supply the market grew in September.

Dealer stock level fall by 15%
Dealer stock levels had fallen on average by 15% from June to end August, but in September this flattened and growth in UK and France (5% and 6% respectively) allowed these larger markets to power forward.

Turkey, Portugal and Italy experienced the strongest used market growth at 59.6%, 36.2% and 29.6% respectively, while overall prices remained firm during September at a time when countries would expect a small price fall. This suggests the market remains nicely balanced with underlying demand exceeding any increases in supply.

EVs and hybrids sales volumes continue to increase
Environmental powertrain (BEVs and hybrids) volumes continued to increase significantly in September up 123% and 104% year-on-year respectively. However, stock turn of environmental cars is well below the market norm (4.4x and 5.4x respectively) suggesting the growth is driven by oversupply as much as underlying demand. Accordingly, prices are less stable.

Conversely, diesels and petrols are now both in short supply with high average stock turns of 7.9x and 7.3x which is up 35% and 37% respectively.

Supply shortages in sub 12-month market
Sub-12-month old volumes are down significantly (7.0%), but their level of stock turn increased year-on-year (34%) suggesting low volumes are still driven by supply shortages caused by OEMs not forcing the market through demonstrators and pre-reg cars.

“Growth in the September used car market was extremely healthy but was still tempered by tight levels of dealer stock”, explained Andy Shields, INDICATA’s global business unit director.

Market in good shape but dealers should remain cautious
“The market is very stable with prices firm and demand continuing to exceed supply. As we move into Quarter 4, the used market looks in good shape. However, with the second wave of virus infections now seemingly inevitable and new lockdowns happening, dealers and remarketers should remain cautious.

“Combine OEM new supply coming back online and an increased number of trade-ins, the market could switch quickly from under to oversupply,” he added.

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European new and used EV sales are growing, but residuals are falling. INDICATA’s director Andy Shields puts this market trend into perspective

Oct 28, 2020   written by Autorola

Since August, used EV sales volumes have been going well year-on-year across INDICATA’s 13 European countries with our data showing a significant switch to environmental powertrains since lockdowns were lifted.

At the same time European used car markets are generally being constrained by supply, with an increase in volumes by 10.3% in August year-on-year, but a contraction in stock supply since June of 15%. This is creating a generally stable market price or a price increase as supply outstrips demand.

EV prices are softening
However, EVs are not following this trend. Since February, in Germany the Indicata EV price index for petrol used cars in August was 97.6%, however used EVs were down to index 90%. In the UK used petrol prices are at 103.5%, while used EVs are priced at 99.6%.

Indeed, INDICATA sees similar price lag trends in almost all European markets, with EV prices worse off than their petrol and diesel counterparts.

INDICATA analyses not only sales but assesses market attractiveness by comparing sales to stock availability, and here the issue is clear. In August diesel cars had an annualised stock turn of 10.2x, up 30% year-on-year and petrol cars a stock turn of 9.5x, up 29%.

EV supply still outstrips demand
EVs however have had only a 5.3x turn in 2020 and whilst marginally up versus 2019, this is a sign that EV supply still outstrips demand, hence the poor performance residual values.

There are several factors causing this poor stock turn? The gap in range and speed performance of newer EVs versus older ones is greater now than between new and old petrol cars, is one reason.

OEMs have a vested interest to push EVs into the market and after slowly setting up production capacity and launching new models into the market, many have finally caught up and started to benefit from free supply.

EV new car sales rise 3-fold
ACEA’s new car statistics show that EV registration share in August had increased three-fold (7.2% vs 2.4%) compared to the used car EV market only doubling. This suggests that sales volume increases are supply pushed and not matched by a corresponding demand in the used market.

As a sign of the times, INDICATA’s recent work with a 50-outlet dealer group demonstrated an optimisation of price and stock mix. Overall, they were in a good shape, apart from EVs, where sales were slow, stock aging and unit profitability was starting to become a challenge.

EVs face a tough time in the used market
Therefore, INDICATA anticipates a tough time for EVs going forward with a healthy increase in sales not lulling the market into a false sense of security. As always, INDICATA encourages dealers not to look at sales alone, vehicle attractiveness led by KPIs such as market day’s supply and stock turn are the true measures to make decisions on what stock they should buy.

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Autorola Group confirms virtual attendance at the Fleet Europe Summit 2020

Oct 28, 2020   written by Autorola

We are looking forward to attending the digital Fleet Europe Summit on the 17 and 18 of November.

Our three business units – MarketPlace, INDICATA and Solutions will all be represented so please come and see us on our digital booth.

Our global INDICATA director Andy Shields will also be speaking, Morten Holmsten, our global MarketPlace director will be on the jury and Ib Kimose, our global Solutions director will also be in attendance.

Pleased to support this annual event
While we are sad not to be able to meet up with our customers, colleagues and friends in person we are pleased that Fleet Europe is able to host this important annual coming together of the fleet and remarketing industry.

“It is important that we all continue communicating and stay together as we fight this pandemic so what better way than supporting the Fleet Europe Summit. We look forward to seeing you online in November,” said Autorola Group CEO Peter Grøftehauge.

Please also look out for our forthcoming article in the Fleet Europe magazine.

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Introduction from CEO Peter Grøftehauge

Sep 22, 2020   written by Autorola

August was another strong month for the European used car industry according to our latest August INDICATA used car insights report with sales up on average 10.3% year-on-year.

Used car pricing continued to increase in most markets with Turkey, Portugal and Italy experiencing the largest year-on-year rises.

Despite these rises we sense that the used car industry is cooling down very slightly and it will be interesting to see how September pans out for vendors and buyers alike according to INDICATA business unit director Andy Shields (LinkedIn).

This will involve tight control of stock and pricing, both of which INDICATA can help companies with across 13 European countries.

Autorola Mexico continues to grow
Mexico is a country where the remarketing sector is still growing in maturity and our Autorola team led by Alfredo Hernandez (LinkedIn) is doing some great work with OEMs, banks and rental companies developing these strategies.

The used market is very strong currently and Autorola’s online used car inspection and sales portal is at the heart of many successful online auctions.

We interviewed Alfredo about the changing face of the Mexican market focusing on how the used and new car markets are doing and how Autorola is using its technology and processes to help increase the transparency and professionalism of all used vehicle sales.

Digitisation of remarketing plans a central role in fleet management
Our Solutions business unit is advising its customers to keep its used cars moving to support business finances and cashflows as the remarketing industry settles down following the global pandemic.

With digitisation and automation now playing a central role in running fleets, Autorola Solutions believes profitability and efficiency are two immediate areas which can be influenced significantly as a result.

Read what business unit director Ib Kimose (LinkedIn) has to say about how our Fleet Monitor asset management system can help streamline processes, improve efficiency and performance, as well as ensure all activities are compliant.

End of an era – a tribute to Niels Grøftehauge
Finally, it is with great sadness that I announce the passing of my father Niels Grøftehauge. Niels has been involved with Autorola from the very beginning and has been a great source of inspiration for us all in Autorola, Bilsalg, Autocom and and a significant contributor to the market position we have achieved at Autorola Group today.

I know many customers, colleagues and suppliers have met Niels over the years and will remember his cheerful nature and depth of knowledge of the automotive industry. He will be missed, and we honour his memory!

Best regards
Peter (LinkedIn)

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New INDICATA insights

Sep 23, 2020   written by Autorola

The European used car market grew by 10.3% year-on-year in August on the back of rising prices and supply shortages according to INDICATA’s insights report, but signs of a slowdown are showing.

Twelve of the 13 countries where INDICATA has a presence experienced growth during August.

Turkey, Portugal and Italy saw the biggest year-on-year growth at 41.7%, 39% and 33.1% respectively, while only the UK market contracted in August, by 3.3%.

August used car pricing was strong
Used car pricing was strong and continued to increase in most markets, which combined with reports of rising wholesale prices and high conversion rates, showed that overall demand is outstripping supply.

INDICATA’s insights show that sub-12-month old cars are particularly in short supply as OEM self-registration and demonstrator schemes continue to be compromised by manufacturing plants playing catch up following the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Dealers are short of cars
Dealers across Europe remained short of used cars, particularly those in Poland and Portugal where stock levels reduced by 11% during August.

The UK and Turkey experienced the joint highest rise in stock of 3%.

While August pricing continued to rise, INDICATA warned that dealers are becoming more cautious in their buying habits as wholesale prices have remained high. In addition, rising Covid-19 infection rates could too result in a slowdown across many European countries in September and Q4.

Signs of slowing down
“There are signs that the European used car market started slowing down during August although prices remained strong,” explained Andy Shields, INDICATA’s global business unit director.

He continued, “Dealers are becoming more cautious with stocking following rises in infection rates.

“There are still healthy profits to be found from fast-moving stock but dealers need to keep a close eye on pricing and stocking days to ensure they aren’t left with slow moving stock should prices and demand swiftly fall.”

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Used car market playing catch up in Mexico

Sep 23, 2020   written by Autorola

With a population of almost 130 million, a rich cultural history and diversity, and abundant natural resources, Mexico has the 11th largest economy in the world. Primary activities include farming and fishing; secondary activities comprise manufacturing, mining and construction; and tertiary activities cover retail and the services sector.

Yet it is a country that now faces many health and economic challenges. The Covid-19 pandemic has caused vast challenge with over 70,000 deaths recorded to date. A knock-on implication, but by no means the only contributing factor, has also seen the country’s GDP fall by -17.1% during Q2.

Positive economic signs since May
Mexico’s president, Andrés Manuel López Obrador declared the economy had ‘hit bottom’ in April and May. There have been positive signs since with Mexico’s economic activity advancing 8.9% in June.

Amongst this backdrop, Alfredo and his team have clearly faced their own trials, but indications are that road ahead looks increasingly positive.

“Quite simply, April and May were horrible,” explained Alfredo. “We sold 10% of what we are used to selling during that period.

Used market playing catch up
“Since then, the used car market has been playing catch up and we are now ahead of all expectations.”

Alfredo reports a significant rise in demand for used vehicles since June, from all Autorola partner OEM brands – BMW, FCA and Mercedes Benz – with conversion rates up in the high 90% per sale. This is in contrast to the typical 75% sales conversion rates pre-Covid-19. Such has been the performance that other OEM brands are also looking on with interest to provide their dealers with a steady flow of stock.

And whilst the used car market shows a significant uplift, the new car market continues to be hard pressed. A combination of economic factors and personal security issues highlighting just a few of the challenges.

Daily rental is growing
One area showing some real potential for growth is rental – not least of which because of the geographical challenges Mexico represents with a central urbanisation, surrounded by dessert and mountain ranges.

Some of the highly populated tourist areas which are home to large fleets of tourist transport – Cancun as an example in the south east or Los Cabos on the Baja California peninsula – require defleet vehicles to be shipped long distances to get them back into densely populated areas (central Mexico). Some rental businesses are now exploring the opportunity to use the Autorola platform to facilitate this ‘remote selling’ function.

Our online platforms are suited to OEM activity
Alfredo explained, “Without doubt, the OEM side of the business continues to be key and our platforms are made for their activity, but the rental market opportunity is an interesting one that presents its own challenges and opportunities for fleets and buyers. There is exploratory work to be done but the capabilities and flexibility of our system is opening up potential new opportunities for different market sectors – something we will continue to explore.”

For Alfredo and Autorola Mexico the road ahead is becoming increasingly clear and already there are some exciting plans afoot which will see the business continue to go from strength-to-strength.

As Alfredo himself puts it, “This is an exciting time for us as a business and we are genuinely excited about what is to come over the next few weeks and months.

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Autorola Solutions saves your business time and earns you money while showing you how you go digital with a purpose

Sep 23, 2020   written by Autorola

Autorola Solutions is advising its customers to ‘keep moving’ in a bid to support business finances, and more specifically cashflows, as the remarketing industry continues to settle post-pandemic.

With digitisation and automation now playing a central role in running fleets, Autorola Solutions believes profitability and efficiency are two key and immediate areas which can be influenced significantly as a result.

Delays in selling assets impacts cashflow
Ib Kimose, director, Autorola Solutions, said, “Cost saving is a central issue in vehicle fleet management and every fleet manager wants to achieve large returns with low costs.

“Each day an asset is standing still on the compound without moving onwards in the flow, it depreciates, while at the same time accruing cost to storage.

“Delays impact largely on fleet management businesses and is directly linked to the final sales price and margin obtained. This has a direct impact on cashflow.”

Work intelligently with data
He continued, “Working intelligently with data allows you to monitor on any gateway your flow and allows you to freely configure your focus areas; from timely call back of your cars on the road, to actual returns, return inspections, sales preparations to online listing of cars and the aftersales processes.”

Autorola Solutions’ insight highlights that fleet managers agree that they spend too much time reporting work times and the most frustrating aspect of fleet management is the high cost throughout the lifecycle of the asset and long lead-times.

Asset life cycle stages
“It is important to stay connected to your stakeholder landscape; customers and drivers, as well as suppliers and business partners, all play an important role in the different stages of the asset life cycle,” explained Ib.

“Thus, boosting productivity collectively is important. Fleet Monitor is both a process management tool and a collaborative platform with communication options – designed to simplify every part of your fleet and resource management.”

Lean fleet management
Autorola Solutions offers lean fleet management based on state-of-the-art online systems that work together to support efficient fleet management processes from acquisition to disposal for fleet, OEM, bank, leasing companies and dealer groups.

Fleet Monitor has been proven to help businesses streamline processes, improve efficiency and performance, as well as ensure all activities are compliant. The collaborative platform provides users with a powerful tool to reduce operational costs and mitigate both operational and financial risks, and its communication module is an integral part of creating a service-minded platform.

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Introduction from CEO Peter Grøftehauge

Aug 20, 2020   written by Autorola

While the European used car market has suffered from trading challenges during the Covid-19 pandemic lockdown the market bounced back in June and July with most countries seeing record sales and demand.

That’s great news to see the markets come back to strength so quickly but now our INDICATA used car insights reveal that the European used car market could be short of 500,000 used cars as dealers do not replace used cars as fast as they have sold them.

Shift towards greener cars
The shift towards buying greener cars continues with consumers walking away from older diesel cars. Electric and hybrid used car sales were up year-on-year and overall consumers seem keen to go green.

This is the seventh INDICATA Market Watch Insights report which we have published, and the response has been very positive. Customers are finding INDICATA invaluable in this current used car climate helping them understand in real time what used cars are selling for in their region to help price and sell them profitably.

In this current climate it may mean increasing prices of stock on dealer forecourts. We are starting to see price rises in some markets, but the majority of dealers are still not making the most of these extraordinary market conditions.

INDICATA also helps dealers determine the fastest selling used cars in their region to help them decide what stock to buy at auction. System demonstrations are available across 13 countries, so we urge dealers and asset owners to try it out for themselves to see how it helps transform used car businesses.

Dealers are being cautious
There is definitely restricted stock in many markets, but dealers are being cautious about the volumes of used stock they are buying in the current market.

Record used car demand saw our MarketPlace business unit record its best ever months in the company’s history. Our sales were up by over 30% and as consumer demand changed following the pandemic, we have seen a renewed growth in export as dealers and fleets look for new markets to sell those cars out of fashion and import cars as dealers search for new stock.

We are still in the unique position of our online used vehicle auction platform driving Europe’s used car remarketing industry. It continues to help vendors who want to sell and buyers who want to buy used vehicles with multiple online auctions held daily across more than 30 countries.

Trade in App film launched
Since Autorola Solutions announced its new Trade In App last month, it has received a great reaction from the motor trade. We have now released a film of the App to show you in more detail how it works. Please take a few minutes to watch the film and you may recognise a few Autorola Group colleagues who are now film stars.

We believe the used car markets across Europe will continue to be very busy across the summer and our MarketPlace, INDICATA and Solutions teams look forward to helping and supporting you in whatever way they can.

Happy selling

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July’s used car growth should give dealers confidence to increase prices says INDICATA

Aug 20, 2020   written by Autorola

Sales of used cars in Europe rose again in July by an average of 13.5% year-on-year following the June increase of 13.2% according to the latest insights from INDICATA, reinforcing that the sector is alive and well following the Covid-19 pandemic.

Twelve out of the 13 countries, where INDICATA provides real time used car insights, reported a rise in sales, except for the UK which experienced a 1.8% fall, primarily down to a shortage of stock.

12 out of 13 countries saw sales increases in July
Turkey saw a healthy 64% in sales in July while Portugal and Spain reported a 25% and 30% respective sales growth.

Stock shortages continues to be a problem and on average are running at 14% across Europe when comparing 1 August with 1 April, which equates to around half a million cars according to INDICATA data.

UK saw sales fall based on stock shortages
The worst hit markets are in the UK where dealers have 22% fewer cars in stock while Sweden and Poland stock levels have fallen by 26% and 21% respectively. Italy has experienced the strongest stock levels with a fall of just 5% since April.

A number of the countries are turning this stock shortage to their advantage with the likes of Sweden increasing prices by 2.5%, Poland by 1.8% and Turkey experiencing a massive 10% in the last month due to major inflation.

Dealers are passing up chances to increase profits
However, many of the countries are still not increasing prices to reflect reduced stock availability and dealers are passing up chances to increase used car profitability.

INDICATA is encouraging dealers to increase prices on fast moving stock before the opportunity is lost, but to remain cautious on slow moving stock as this should be cleared out whilst demand remains.

Hybrid and electric cars are in high demand
The move to environmental powertrains has continued with the year-on-year sales of hybrid and electric increasing by 98% and 114%. Many companies were waiting for used car buyers to embrace low or zero emission cars and the Covid-19 pandemic seems to be the tipping point required.

Popularity of models varies dramatically country by country but the initial surge in sports cars is falling in place of a growth in SUVs with luxury and small cars strong.

Stock shortages are putting a brake on sales
“With a strong second consecutive used car sales month we are definitely witnessing a major turn in the sector’s fortunes. Indeed, it is stock shortages that is putting a brake on sales, not a slowing down of pent-up demand,” explained Andy Shields, INDICATA’s Global Business Unit Director.

“The strength of the used car market looks encouraging for the rest of the summer, but dealers must now take a hard look at their stock. Caution may return to the market in September. Now is the time to ensure your pricing strategies truly identify fast moving stock and take advantage. If, however, particular stock has not sold in the current market then don’t be greedy as it certainly will not sell if the market turns.”

For further information about INDICATA’s monthly report go to and sign up to our INDICATA Europe LinkedIn page.

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MarketPlace’s digital auctions help Europe’s used car industry deal with the ‘new normal’

Aug 20, 2020   written by Autorola

At the heart of the used car recovery
The MarketPlace digital platform has been at the heart of Europe’s used car recovery throughout the pandemic with many countries like Germany, Sweden and The Netherlands continuing to trade and support the wholesale market buyers and vendors.

The demand for used cars has been so high that currently there are stock shortages in many countries. Contract extensions means used cars won’t come back into the market until the autumn, while some cars have been locked in compounds and are only just reaching the used market ready for sale.

The industry is still short of stock
That spells good news as supply is starting to improve but still not fast enough to deliver the 500,000 used cars which sister company INDICATA believes dealers need to meet current consumer demand.

In July Italy, Portugal, The Netherlands and Spain all experienced year-on-year sales growth and MarketPlace’s global business unit director Morten Holmsten believes August will continue the growth trend with prices rising in many countries.

Prices must increase
“Markets cannot carry on with demand exceeding supply without prices increasing. Some dealers are short of stock and are trying to buy new stock, but during the pandemic consumers have become more environmentally friendly and are looking to buy a hybrid or electric car.

“That means some dealers are finding it difficult to sell cars they had in stock during lockdown. Meanwhile, used car insights from our INDICATA online platform are showing dealers exactly what they must buy to meet consumer demand. Older cars have also doing well as have sports cars, but trends are changing very quickly, and we are already starting to see this change.

Diesels are making a comeback
“Diesels have started to make a comeback, while SUVs remain extremely popular and older cars continue to be very popular, mainly because they are cheaper. The markets are changing week by week,” he added.

This change in consumer demand has meant that Autorola is seeing more dealers export those cars that are out of favour, while some dealers are turning to import used cars wherever they can just to increase their internal stocks.

Export and import are growing
“Just as we saw after the recession a few years ago, our MarketPlace online portal help balance the demand and supply of cars across Europe. And the same is already happening post Covid-19 lockdown, although not in such high volumes as the markets are still short of used stock,” said Holmsten.

Autorola expects the used market to be very healthy throughout 2020 as it will take time for each country to balance supply and demand. Also with some countries’ economies likely to be affected it could mean older and cheaper cars remain in high demand, although the consumer demand for hybrids and electric cars is likely to push the prices up higher and higher as the stock of used cars will not be able to keep up with demand.

For further information about MarketPlace go to

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