Wait until you hear how long experts think this problem will last…
If you live in the UK you’ve probably noticed used car prices are completely out of control. While we certainly have our share of the same problem here in North America, and other marketplaces are in the lurch too, Auto Trader is predicting the problem in the UK could stretch on for years to come.
See how the UK keeps chipping away at private car ownership here.
In fact, Ian Plummer, director of Auto Trader, is quoted by Express recently as saying “drivers will have to get used to paying more for older cars.” Most people like paying more for less, so surely Brits will take this turn of events like a good sport because they are, after all, team players.
Plummer, like many others, blames the shortage of new cars on “the aftermath of Covid.” You might agree with him, but I don’t. Covid didn’t cause this problem, the overreaction of government officials did. Shutting everything down didn’t stop the virus from spreading, but it has set up years and years of economic woes.
But wait, saving lives was worth flushing economies down the toilet – that’s an argument I’ve heard repeatedly. With Brits and citizens on the European continent facing the prospect of a very cold winter, the economic downturn could, in fact, cost lives.
While more expensive used cars seems like a trifle in comparison, the fact is most people need a car to get around. Public transit isn’t sufficient in all areas nor does it work for everyone. That report from Express talks about how Auto Trader predicts the number of 10-year-old-plus cars on UK roads will increase from 7.2 million right now to 9.2 million in 2027.
Think about it: they’re forecasting the problem with used car prices will get worse in the next four years or so, not better. That doesn’t bode well for the UK or other parts of the western world, maybe the entire globe. More people will be fixing and loping along with old jalopy not because they want to save money, but because the alternative will be cost prohibitive.
As is the case so often, car prices are the canary in the coal mine economically. This economic shift will play havoc with the supposed switch to electrification because if people are struggling just to keep an old car on the road, they’re sure won’t have cash for a $50,000 EV. Plus, if electricity prices and blackouts keep being all the rage in the UK in the coming years, electrification will be far less attractive.
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