Europe Used Car Market

Europe Used Car Market Size, Share and Growth Forecast by Car Type (Hatchback, Sedan, SUV, MUV, Others), by Fuel Type (Petrol, Diesel, Others), by Sales Channel (Online, Offline), and by Region for 2024-2031

Report ID: PMRREP34576

Report Type: Ongoing

Format: PPT*, PDF, EXCEL

Industry: Automotive

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Europe Used Car Market Size, Share, & Growth Analysis

The Europe market for used car is estimated to value at around US$503.1 Bn by the end of 2031 from US$341.3 Bn recorded in 2024. The market is expected to secure a CAGR of 5.7% in the forthcoming years from 2024 to 2031.

Key Highlights of the Market

  • Digital platforms revolutionize buying and selling processes
  • Growing market for used electric and hybrid vehicles
  • Advanced data analytics and AI enhance pricing and customer service
  • Car subscription services and car-sharing platforms gain popularity
  • Emphasis on sustainability and the circular economy
  • Blockchain technology improves transparency and trust in vehicle histories

Market Attributes

Key Insights

Market Size (2024E)

US$341.3 Bn

Projected Market Value (2031F)

US$503.1 Bn

Global Market Growth Rate (CAGR 2024 to 2031)

5.7%

Historical Market Growth Rate (CAGR 2019 to 2023)

5.0%

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Market Introduction and Trend Analysis

The Europe used car market is strong and diverse, and accurately reflecting the continent's economic differences, and consumer choices.

Key countries in this market include Germany, the UK, France, Italy, and Spain, which have a high demand for pre-owned vehicles due to economic factors and a strong tradition of car ownership.

The market benefits from a well-established network of dealerships and online platforms, providing buyers with a wide range of options.

Economic considerations such as inflation and the cost of new vehicles drive many consumers towards more affordable used cars. Additionally, there has been an increase in demand for electric and hybrid vehicles as countries aim for greener transportation alternatives.

Eastern European countries also hold significance in the market, often serving as destinations for older, more affordable used cars from Western Europe.

The cross-border trade of used vehicles is facilitated by the European Union's regulations, allowing for relatively seamless transactions between member states.

This dynamic contributes to a healthy flow of vehicles and helps balance supply and demand across the continent.

Despite challenges like economic fluctuations and regulatory changes, the market remains strong and adaptable to new trends such as digitalization, and the shift towards more sustainable vehicle options.

The European used car market has been transformed by digital platforms, increased demand for electric vehicles, and new ownership models.

Companies like Auto1, and Cazoo have revolutionized online sales, while stricter emissions regulations and government incentives boost the second-hand EV market.

Advanced data analytics, AI, and blockchain technology improve pricing, transparency, and trust. Additionally, car subscription services and a focus on sustainability are reshaping consumer preferences and industry practices.

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Historical Growth and Course Ahead

The European used car market has seen notable changes driven by various economic, technological, and regulatory factors. The COVID-19 pandemic initially caused a sales drop, but demand surged as people avoided public transport.

Post-pandemic, semiconductor shortages boosted used car sales. Digital transformation accelerated, with online platforms like Auto1, and Cazoo enhancing market efficiency and transparency.

Regulatory changes, particularly stringent EU emissions regulations, shifted preferences towards electric and hybrid vehicles, with subsidies further driving this trend.

Cross-border trade within the EU remained strong, although Brexit introduced new complexities.

Market consolidation saw larger companies acquiring smaller ones, leading to a more organized and competitive landscape, providing better services and more options to consumers.

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Market Growth Drivers

Economic Factors, and Consumer Preferences

Economic considerations and consumer preferences significantly drive the used car market in Europe. In Germany, the high costs associated with vehicle ownership, including taxes, insurance, and maintenance, make used cars an attractive option for many consumers.

The country's strong tradition of car ownership also supports a robust market for well-maintained pre-owned vehicles.

On the other hand, in Spain, the economic recovery following the COVID-19 pandemic has influenced consumer behavior. Many Spaniards are opting for more affordable used cars as a practical solution to budget constraints.

The relatively high depreciation rates of new cars further make used vehicles a more financially sensible choice for a wide range of buyers.

The economic factors, and consumer preferences highlight the importance of affordability and value in the European used car market.

The trend towards pre-owned vehicles is likely to continue as consumers seek cost-effective and reliable transportation options.

Regulatory Push for Environmentally Sustainable Vehicles

Regulations promoting sustainability and eco-friendliness are transforming the market. In France, the government has implemented substantial incentives for electric vehicles, including subsidies, and tax benefits.

These policies have increased the availability and attractiveness of used electric vehicles (EVs), making them a popular choice among environmentally conscious buyers.

In the UK, stringent emissions regulations and the impending ban on the sale of new petrol and diesel cars by 2030 are driving a significant shift in the market. The regulatory environment encourages consumers to consider second-hand electric and hybrid vehicles, which are seen as future-proof and compliant with evolving standards.

These regulatory measures are accelerating the adoption of eco-friendly vehicles in the used car market. Both France, and the UK are thus witnessing a growing demand for sustainable transportation options, reflecting broader environmental goals and consumer shifts towards greener alternatives.

Factors Impeding the Market

Supply Chain Disruptions

Supply chain disruptions, particularly the global semiconductor shortage, have constrained the availability of both new and used cars.

In the Netherlands, and Poland, these disruptions have led to reduced inventories and higher prices for pre-owned vehicles.

Consumers thus face difficulties finding affordable and desirable used cars, limiting market growth and impacting overall sales.

Economic Uncertainty, and Inflation Impacting Affordability

Economic uncertainty and rising inflation in Europe pose significant restraints on the used car market.

In countries like Italy, and Greece, fluctuating economic conditions and increased living costs reduce consumers' purchasing power.

This financial pressure makes it challenging for many to afford even second-hand vehicles, leading to decreased market activity and fewer transactions in the used car sector.

Future Opportunities for Used Car Companies in Europe

Adoption of Subscription-Based Car Ownership Models in Urban Centers

Urban centers in European countries present a ripe opportunity for the adoption of subscription-based car ownership models in the used car market.

With geographic conditions characterized by high population density and efficient public transportation systems, consumers in cities like London, Paris, and Amsterdam are increasingly seeking flexible, and cost-effective mobility solutions.

By calibrating to these conditions, stakeholders can introduce subscription services that offer access to a fleet of used cars monthly, eliminating the need for long-term commitments and upfront costs associated with traditional car ownership.

This futuristic opportunity not only meets the evolving needs of urban dwellers but also promotes sustainability by encouraging shared mobility and reducing reliance on private car ownership in congested city environments.

Development of Off-Road Adventure Tourism with Specialized Vehicle Rentals

Europe's diverse geography, encompassing rugged mountain ranges, picturesque coastlines, and vast countryside, presents an exciting opportunity for the development of off-road adventure tourism in the used car market.

By calibrating to geographic conditions like varied terrain and natural landscapes, stakeholders can offer specialized vehicle rentals tailored for off-road exploration and outdoor adventures.

Countries like Norway, Iceland, and Scotland, renowned for their scenic beauty and rugged terrain, are prime destinations for off-road enthusiasts seeking adrenaline-fueled experiences.

This futuristic opportunity not only taps into the growing demand for experiential travel but also stimulates the sale of used off-road vehicles, creating new revenue streams and driving growth in the European used car market.

Category-wise Analysis

Category

Projected CAGR through 2031

Car Type - Hatchback

5.7%

Sales Channel - Online

5.1%

Hatchbacks Lead the Pack in the UK, While SUVs Surge Across Europe

The Hatchback segment holds a dominant position in the European used car market, contributing significantly to the total market value. The estimated value stood at US$98.8 Bn in 2023, with a remarkable CAGR of 5.7%.

In the UK, hatchbacks reign supreme as the leading car type, capturing a significant portion of the market share.

Models like the Ford Fiesta, and Volkswagen Golf dominate sales charts, prized for their compact size, fuel efficiency, and practicality. Their popularity is attributed to their versatility, making them ideal for urban driving and commuting in congested city streets.

Additionally, hatchbacks offer a range of options, from economical city runners to sporty models, appealing to a broad spectrum of consumers seeking both affordability and style.

SUVs follow closely behind hatchbacks in popularity, experiencing a notable surge in demand across Europe. In countries like Germany, SUVs have seen significant growth in sales, with models like the BMW X3, and Volkswagen Tiguan leading the pack.

Consumers are drawn to SUVs for their spacious interiors, elevated driving positions, and versatile capabilities, making them suitable for both urban and outdoor adventures.

SUVs cater to diverse needs, offering ample cargo space, advanced safety features, and optional all-wheel-drive systems for enhanced performance and handling.

Sedans, while still a prominent choice in the European market, have experienced some decline in sales compared to hatchbacks and SUVs. However, they maintain a loyal following among buyers seeking refinement, and comfort.

In countries like France, and Italy, sedans like the Peugeot 308, and Alfa Romeo Giulia remain popular choices for their sleek designs, luxurious interiors, and smooth driving experiences.

Sedans offer a blend of style, sophistication, and performance, appealing to consumers who prioritize comfort and elegance in their daily commute or business travel.

Online Sales Bring in Notable Profits to Used Car Industry of Europe

In the Europe (EUROPE) region, online sales channels are increasingly shaping the landscape of the used car market. With an estimated market value of US$198.2 Bn in 2023, and a notable CAGR of 5.1%, they have become a dominant segment in the industry.

The automotive retail sector in the UK has been reshaped by online sales channels, which have become the dominant force, revolutionizing the car purchasing process for consumers.

Platforms like AutoTrader, and Cazoo offer a convenient and transparent buying experience, allowing customers to browse extensive inventories, compare prices, and complete transactions from the comfort of their homes.

This shift towards online channels is driven by changing consumer preferences for digital convenience, especially evident in younger demographics who are more accustomed to e-commerce platforms for all their shopping needs.

However, traditional offline sales channels, represented by brick-and-mortar dealerships, still play a vital role in the automotive market.

Established dealerships like Arnold Clark, and Pendragon continue to thrive by providing personalized customer service, test drive experiences, and in-depth consultations that online platforms may struggle to replicate.

Many consumers still value the tactile experience of physically inspecting a vehicle and interacting with sales representatives, particularly for high-value purchases like cars.

While online sales channels offer convenience and transparency, offline dealerships provide a human touch and expertise that remains invaluable to many consumers.

The key to success lies in striking a balance between the convenience of online platforms and the personalized service of offline dealerships, ensuring that customers have access to a range of options that cater to their preferences and needs.

Country-wise Analysis

Country

CAGR through 2031

Germany

4.2%

U.K.

5.8%

Germany's Used Car Market Thrives Amidst Environmental Challenges

Germany's used car market is one of the largest in Europe, with an estimated value of US$64.9 Bn in 2023, and an estimated CAGR of 4.2% through 2031. It benefits from a robust economy, high disposable incomes, and a strong car culture that favors well-maintained vehicles.

The market includes sales from dealerships, private sellers, and online platforms, with a preference for certified pre-owned programs due to quality assurance. German cars' reputation for durability and variety across all segments enhances their appeal. Technological advancements in the buying process, such as virtual showrooms, have streamlined purchases.

However, the market faces challenges from stringent environmental regulations and a push towards electric vehicles (EVs), which may affect the demand for traditional internal combustion engine (ICE) vehicles.

High depreciation rates, particularly for luxury cars, also impact resale values. As Germany moves towards greener transportation, the used car market must adapt to maintain its significance amidst these evolving dynamics.

UK's Used Car Market Adapts to Economic Shifts, and Digital Transformation

The UK’s used car market is substantial, with an estimated value of US$43.6 Bn in 2023 and a compound annual growth rate of 5.8%. Despite economic uncertainties like Brexit, the market remains strong due to the cost-effectiveness of used cars, and the changing consumer preferences.

The market structure includes dealership sales, private sales, and a growing number of online platforms and car subscription models. Financing options and warranties make used cars more accessible, and the rapid adoption of digital sales platforms offers greater convenience and selection.

Challenges include economic fluctuations affecting consumer confidence and regulatory changes aimed at reducing emissions and promoting EVs, which could shift market dynamics.

The UK market is sensitive to economic conditions, but its quick adaptation to digital integration sets it apart. The high volume of used cars results in increased competition and potentially lower prices, making it essential for the market to continuously evolve to meet consumer demands and regulatory requirements.

Competitive Landscape Analysis for Europe Used Car Market

The competitive landscape in the European used car market is characterized by a diverse array of players vying for market share and consumer attention.

Established online marketplaces like AutoScout24, and Mobile.de dominate with extensive listings and user-friendly platforms, while newcomers like Cazoo disrupt the traditional market with innovative e-commerce approaches.

National players such as Aramisauto in France and AA Cars in the UK maintain strong positions in their respective markets, leveraging local expertise and customer trust.

Technology advancements, mergers, and strategic expansions drive competition, with companies constantly innovating to improve services, expand reach, and capture the growing demand for quality used vehicles across Europe.

Recent Industry Developments

2022

BCA Marketplace, Europe’s largest vehicle remarketing company, significantly upgraded its digital auction platform to improve user experience and efficiency. The enhancements included advanced AI-driven pricing tools and a more intuitive interface, catering to the increasing demand for online vehicle auctions.

2021

Cazoo, the UK-based online used car retailer, expanded its operations into France and Germany as part of its European growth strategy. This expansion included the launch of local websites and infrastructure to facilitate the sale and delivery of used cars in these new markets.

2020

AutoScout24, one of Europe’s largest online automotive marketplaces, acquired LeasingMarkt.de, a leading online marketplace for vehicle leasing in Germany. This acquisition aimed to enhance AutoScout24's service offerings by integrating leasing options alongside used car sales.

Report Scope

Attributes

Details

Forecast Period

2024 to 2031

Historical Data Available for

2018 to 2023

Market Analysis

US$ Billion for Value

Key Countries Covered

  • Germany
  • Italy
  • France
  • U.K.
  • Spain
  • Turkiye
  • Russia
  • Rest of Europe

Key Market Segments Covered

  • Car Type
  • Fuel Type
  • Sales Channel
  • Country

Key Companies Profiled in the Report

  • AutoScout24 (Germany)
  • Mobile.de (Germany)
  • eBay Kleinanzeigen (Motors) (Germany)
  • CarNext.com (Netherlands)
  • Cazoo (United Kingdom)
  • Aramisauto (France)
  • BCA Marketplace (United Kingdom)
  • Heycar (Germany)
  • Autoscout24.de (Germany)
  • AA Cars (United Kingdom)
  • CarsIreland.ie (Ireland)
  • Auto Trader (United Kingdom)
  • Autorola (Denmark)

Report Coverage

  • Market Forecast and Trends
  • Company Share Analysis
  • Competitive Intelligence
  • DROT Analysis
  • Market Dynamics and Challenges
  • Strategic Growth Initiatives  

Customization & Pricing

Available upon request

Europe Used Car Market Segmentation

By Car Type

  • Hatchback
  • Sedan
  • SUV
  • MUV
  • Others

By Fuel Type

  • Petrol
  • Diesel
  • Others

By Sales Channel

  • Online
  • Offline

By Countries

  • Germany
  • Italy
  • France
  • UK
  • Spain
  • Turkiye
  • Russia
  • Rest of Europe

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Companies Covered in This Report

Frequently Asked Questions

Economic factors, affordability, and a shift towards environmentally friendly vehicles are surging the demand for used cars in Europe.

Some of the key players operating in the market are AutoScout24 (Germany), Mobile.de (Germany), CarNext.com (Netherlands), Cazoo (United Kingdom), and Aramisauto (France).

The hatchback car type segment recorded a significant market share.

Developing leasing and subscription models offers a compelling opportunity for European players in the Europe used car market.

Germany accounts for a significant share of the market.

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