It was a whirlwind year for the automotive industry in 2021. Customer demand for new cars saw a strong return following the economic insecurity of 2020. However, the worldwide semiconductor chip shortage, and supply chain issues, meant that the motoring industry was unable to meet this demand. The chain effect of this was skyrocketing prices for both new and used cars – a trend that is likely to continue in this year. So, there’s no better time than now to share some useful car buying tips for 2022. But before we delve in, let’s take a look at what’s happening in the industry.
“We expect the competition for new vehicles to be just as fierce as last year as manufacturers play catch up with inventory shortages,” said Andrew Radiven, Head Group Buyer at Hippo Motor Group. “The used car market shows no signs of slowing down, and it’s likely to continue this way for the first two quarters of 2022.
“A culmination of the global pandemic, which has led to more people wanting to get off public transport, teamed with absenteeism at car factories worldwide, is continuing to push up the prices of used and nearly new cars,” Andrew added.
Motorists will also be affected by inflation which directly contributes to the continued price increases for cars in 2022. Overall, the Consumer Price Index (CPI) surged by 5.1% in the 12 months to November 2021. This is the highest annual CPI inflation rate increase since September 2011.
The Office for National Statistics also revealed that the largest upward contributions to this 12-month CPI hike came from transport; 1.34% principally from motor fuels and used cars.
In today’s car market, buyers are facing higher markups, fewer discounts and monetary offers, limited choice, and the pressure to decide on a deal quickly.
At Hippo Leasing, you will find that despite the market status, we have thousands of in-stock used and nearly-new cars.
We have also established relationships with the world’s top manufacturers to ensure competitive lead times on new cars.
Your chosen vehicle can be delivered to anywhere in the UK within 48 hours of deal confirmation. Start your search here.
Nevertheless, there are several things you can still do to ensure that you are getting the best deal for your requirements. Here are five tips to implement on your car search and buying journey in 2022…
Research and make a list of your requirements
It’s easy to get overwhelmed when you’re searching for a car. The best place to start is with a list where you write down exactly what you need from your next car. Is it long commutes, short and snappy trips round town, or maybe your priority is child-friendly features?
Establish all the reasons why having this vehicle will make your life easier. You can make a priority list starting with the most important; include points like luggage space, safety add-ons, tech and connectivity, and so on. Rank these wants and needs, set a budget, and get started on finding makes and models that tick the boxes.
Check safety ratings, read reviews, watch video walkarounds, and find out what the insurance, tax, and fuel costs are likely to be. This research will put you in a good position for when you walk into a dealership or talk to a car consultant on the phone.
Be patient and shop around
Cast your net further and give yourself options. Once you’ve decided on which make and model you are interested in, contact or visit dealerships and manufacturer showrooms in your local vicinity. But also search online within a radius that you’re happy to travel to.
You may find that not all motor organisations are marking up vehicles. Though it’s a competitive market for buyers, the motor trade has targets to fulfil and you’re well within your right to negotiate price and extras on a vehicle you want.
Just be prepared to make a quicker than usual decision on a car as it may get scooped up by another driver.
Consider ordering your next car
One of the best ways to avoid a markup and dealership add-ons is to opt for a new car with a reasonable lead time. For example, Hippo Leasing offers new car deals on makes and models that can be delivered straight from the factory to your chosen UK address.
This is provided you’re willing to wait for roughly between six to 12 weeks (depending on which car you choose). The advantage of ordering a new car means that a dealership or motor trader won’t have to let it sit on the lot for however long it takes for somebody to buy or lease it.
It also allows you to choose colour options, and any add-on features at the time of order. Any extra costs are more transparent at this stage. You can browse an auto company’s website to view the new vehicles available for pre-order and the configurations you can get.
At Hippo Leasing, if you need more information or once you’re ready to go ahead, one of our dedicated account managers can help to confirm your new car order over the phone.
Choose an electric or hybrid vehicle
Demand for EVs has been steadily rising. New figures release by SMMT revealed that battery electric vehicles (BEVs) made up 18.8% of new car sales in November 2021 with 21,726 units bought. This is more than double in comparison to the same month in 2020.
Both electric and hybrid vehicle prices are slowly becoming more competitive as the market begins to boom with manufacturers such as Hyundai, Volkswagen, BMW, Ford, and many more launching new cars into this segment.
Not only is there more choice of electric, hybrid, and plug-in hybrid vehicles, but there is also a government grant – albeit one that was recently reduced – to help towards buying an electric or plug-in hybrid. Drivers can get funding of £1,500 for vehicles up to £32,000.
Furthermore, substantial tax incentives remain for EVs that are obtained via company salary sacrifice schemes or business leasing. The bottom line is that choosing an Electric Vehicle, Plug-In Hybrid, or Hybrid is a good economical choice for the long run, especially in line with the UK Government’s “Road to Zero” strategy.
Part-exchange for a nearly new or approved used vehicle
As far as car buying tips for 2022 go, this is one of the best to utilise. Nearly new and approved used cars continue to offer a better selection for car buyers who want to walk into a dealership, choose a car, test drive it, and get the deal signed. However, this has caused record-high prices.
The average price of a used car surged 30.5% year-on-year in December 2021, as revealed by the Auto Trader Retail Price Index. Currently, the average cost of a used car is £17,816, marking the 21st consecutive month of growth (as of January 2022). You’re likely to find vehicles that are aged one-to-three-years-old, are priced higher than what they would have cost brand news. Barmy, right?
The tip here is to check the trade-in value of your current vehicle. This is incredibly strong right now as motor trade organisations are on the hunt for good used vehicles.
Use an online car buying company to get a quote for how much your vehicle is worth. Or take it straight to the dealership where you want to buy your next vehicle from and ask them to provide you with a part-exchange quote.
You can use this amount to offset the cost of your next car.