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Prices cut on nearly-new cars as dealers try to tempt buyers back

Published 04 December 2020

Dealers are slashing tens of thousands of pounds off pre-registered cars in a bid to entice buyers back.

Industry figures from the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) reveal that the number of registrations continues to fall, with nearly 43,000 fewer cars registered in November compared to the same month last year.

However, there are plenty of excellent deals on pre-registered cars around - with dealers attempting to tempt buyers back into new or nearly-new car sales after months of COVID-19 lockdowns and Brexit uncertainty shaking up the market.

What is a pre-registered car?

A pre-registered car is one that has been registered by a dealer with the DVLA so it has been assigned a registration number. This is different to buying a brand new car where it’s only registered when you buy it. The most common reason for this is to boost sales figures at the end of a month or quarter so dealers meet the target set by the manufacturer, which earns them a bonus.

There is no age limit on what can be described as a pre-reg car, but almost all will be less than six months old and have fewer than 500 miles on the odometer. Some dealers will also describe a pre-reg car as an ‘ex-demo’ or ‘delivery miles only’. If it has a V5C logbook, it’s been registered and cannot be advertised or described as new.

>>> How will Covid-19 affect used car values in 2021?

The best pre-reg car deals

The Ford Fiesta, the UK's most-popular car, can be found for as low as £13,800 with 10 miles on the clock. The pre-reg, 2020, 1.0-litre petrol hatchback represents roughly £3000 saved on a nearly-new Fiesta.

There are similar deals to be had on the Vauxhall Corsa, where a 2019 pre-reg model is on sale for less than £9000 with 50 miles. Dealers are cutting more than £4000 off 2020 Golf Match Edition models, too, with diesel engined, pre-reg Golfs up for £17,995.

70-plate premium models, like the Mercedes-Benz A-Class, can be seen at £24,990 - representing significant savings on the luxury small car. The Ford Focus also benefits from price cuts, with a 2019, petrol, Active model priced at £16,395 despite only having covered 10 miles. A newer 2020 1.5-litre diesel Focus can be seen for just £16,670, too.

Those looks for a MINI hatchback are also in luck. There are some excellent deals to be had on petrol examples of the MINI Cooper 1.5-litre, which has a £16,450 price tag.

*All prices correct at time of writing and based on live adverts found at Honest John Cars For Sale

Comments

Engineer Andy    on 5 December 2020

Forgive me, but £14 for a (likely base spec) Fiesta isn't exactly 'cheap', is it, rather like those arguing for a swift changeover to EVs because they are 'equalising on price with ICE cars', because of government grants and car manufacturers putting the prices of ICE car up considerably.

Bear in mind I paid just over £10k for an essentially brand new (15 miles only) mid-spec Focus sized car in early 2006. I'm expected to pay 40% more for a smaller, base-spec car with half the boot space? Even taking into account inflation and the £'s value these days, that ain't cheap by any measure.

Back then, I could've picked up a similar pre-reg Fiesta for about £6k - my dad bought one (end of line) two years later for about £6.5k. That means actual prices have DOUBLED in 12 years.

The £13.8k Fiesta linked to was only reduced by £200. Wow, what a reduction on the price from a week before. What's scary is that the RRP was around the £17k mark, according to the report.

Admitedly there also was a £12k model on offer on that page as well, but only in NI and with the not-so-good 1.1L engine.

Alan Leeke    on 8 December 2020

Silly prices for new cars have been around for a while now. But they're being disguised because so many people are leasing cars rather than buying them.

It's a win, win for car manufacturers who are getting more money but don't actually give you a car. You have it for two or three years, and then the asset goes back to those who made it, whilst the buyer has had the use of the car but nothing to show for all the money spent.

targen    on 8 December 2020

"As low as" £13.8k..... not really "low" is it??

P Menzies    on 8 December 2020

Forgive me, but £14 for a (likely base spec) Fiesta isn't exactly 'cheap', is it, rather like those arguing for a swift changeover to EVs because they are 'equalising on price with ICE cars', because of government grants and car manufacturers putting the prices of ICE car up considerably. Bear in mind I paid just over £10k for an essentially brand new (15 miles only) mid-spec Focus sized car in early 2006. I'm expected to pay 40% more for a smaller, base-spec car with half the boot space? Even taking into account inflation and the £'s value these days, that ain't cheap by any measure. Back then, I could've picked up a similar pre-reg Fiesta for about £6k - my dad bought one (end of line) two years later for about £6.5k. That means actual prices have DOUBLED in 12 years. The £13.8k Fiesta linked to was only reduced by £200. Wow, what a reduction on the price from a week before. What's scary is that the RRP was around the £17k mark, according to the report. Admitedly there also was a £12k model on offer on that page as well, but only in NI and with the not-so-good 1.1L engine.

Totally agree, I went to my local Peugeot dealer to replace my 2008 with the new model with the same spec. The price had risen by £10000! in 5 years. I didn't even try to negotiate, I walked across the road and bought a Suzuki Vitara and I'm more than pleased so far. I expected the price for the Peugeot to go up but £10000 that's almost 50%, and I had been a Peugeot customer for 20 years.

peggymem    on 8 December 2020

Volvo V90 Momentum Plus T4 Estate Auto £29.000 pre registered with 8 miles on the clock, lots of dealer added extra's. I was going to purchase another Honda CRV but they do not make the 2.2 IDTEC any more. I think the Volvo was a very good as I think the on road price would have been £41,000 plus with all the additional equipment. A very good car for an extraordinary price.

aethelwulf    on 8 December 2020

I cannot see sales increasing even with the incredibly low interest rates the giovernment have inroduced to 'move the economy'. As comenentators have said these prices are laugable. The increases unaffordable to many people that are not given a car by their empoyer.
I will make my 15 year old Mondeo soldier on , its fuyllt MOT's with no advisories 2L petrol and lso my 10 year old Piccanto is perfect with no rust and runs like clockwork. Why wern'e cars built like this is the 1970's? Perhaps we should still have a car industry?,

petergreen    on 8 December 2020

I totally agree. cars are getting so expensive, that many of us can't afford them. As for electric cars, It is not the range, it is not the lack of charging, it is the very high prices. I suspect that a lot of people will be buying second hand petrol engined cars in 2029.
Peter Green

Bernard Melson    on 9 December 2020

Electric cars should, in theory cost less to make than fuel based equivalents as they have fewer parts. Why, then, are models such as the I-Pace from Jaguar up to 50% more than the equivalent E-Pace? You can also add to the list models from Audi, BMW, Mercedes, Lexus, Volvo and others, each of whom seem to think that a 50% premium for an electric car is a good basis for ripping off customers. Don't forget car makers that the volume of noxious emissions produced in the manufacture of and ongoing running costs of electric car exceed the amount of running an efficient petrol or diesel based car until it dies. We are being had - on many levels.

Edited by Bernard Melson on 09/12/2020 at 12:04

Steve Anderson    on 18 December 2020

What a bargain, Engineer Andy! At £14 for a Fiesta, I’d be tempted to buy a couple...

memyself-aye    on 28 December 2020

I would pay £15!
but he's correct - I paid £6.5k for a six month old 2015 Hyundai i10 with only 700 miles in 2015. Now they are £11k new!

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