With the World Cup due to kick off in Moscow on Thursday (14th June), car buying comparison website Motorway.co.uk thought it would be fun take a look at one of Russia’s greatest exports; not vodka, not caviar, not dolls, but the car once the butt of jokes about its reliability – the Lada.
The last time England failed to qualify for the World Cup in 1994, there were 134,297 Russian-built Ladas, registered to drive on UK roads. Today, the number has dwindled by 99.9% to 179. Between 1994 and 2005 – just over 10 years – the number of licensed Ladas fell from more than 134,000 to less than 3,000, a monumental fall from grace.
The Lada, was first built in the Soviet Union in 1970 by the Russian car giant AvtoVAZ. It spawned a thousand playground jokes but ended up selling more than 20 million worldwide. The VAZ-2101 was modelled on the 1966 Fiat 124 saloon and despite its boxy look and drab colours, it proved extremely popular. Almost two-thirds of Ladas went on to be sold outside Russia, with more than 300,000 selling in Britain between 1977 and 1997.
So, where did they all go? Although still a popular sight in Russia, the Lada is now largely extinct on British roads. Sales hit the skids in the UK when tighter carbon emissions standards meant many Ladas didn’t match up to more rigorous green requirements.
But claims ‘the Lada is empty’ may be a little premature since this piece of motoring history has now taken on classic car status. And for the first time since the height of its popularity in the 1990s, the number of licensed Ladas on UK roads has actually started to rise, albeit from a very low base.
At the beginning of 2017, the number of licensed Ladas on UK roads stood at 165. That had increased to 179 by the start of 2018. And with 679 Ladas registered as ‘off the road’, there appears to be a lot of Lada owners storing their rare models away under lock and key, hoping to see values boom, as has happened with many other classic motors from the 1970s, 80s and 90s.
Alex Buttle, director of car buying comparison website Motorway.co.uk comments: “The Lada is not quite empty, but with fewer than 200 now eligible to drive on UK roads it has become seriously rare. And with the eyes of the world on Russia for the next few months, has the Lada’s time come? Nostalgia for Ladas is growing and scarcity will drive up prices. Savvy classic car buyers should consider getting one while they still can.”
The Lamborghini Aventador has the highest level of CO2 emissions at 370 g/km
74 car models over 14 makes will pay the top road tax rate of £2,070
Top 10 gas guzzlers are European supercars, but there are also three American makes – Cadillac, Chevrolet and Corvette – with models in the top VED band
Average price of cars that pay the highest first year VED rate is £160,307
From this month (April 2018), Britain’s highest polluting cars will be charged £2,070 road tax in the first year of registration. But what cars are actually in the top road tax band? We looked into the UK’s top gas guzzlers, and they’re all supercars. These cars are in the top vehicle excise duty (VED) band because they emit more than 255g of CO2 per kilometre*.
Take the Lamborghini Aventador, popular with Premiership footballers, but not a friend of the environment, as the 6.5 Litre V12 model spews out 370g of CO2 per kilometre.
Meanwhile there are 13 Aston Martin models in the top road tax band; making these stylish motors some of the thirstiest gas guzzlers on our roads.
According to analysis by Motorway.co.uk on CO2 emission rates, there are 74 models across 14 car makes (excluding rare supercars such as the Bugatti Veyron) in the highest VED band for emissions. While the top 10 gas guzzlers are European supercars, three American makes – Cadillac, Corvette and Chevrolet – have models in the top VED band. And apart from the Corvette Z06 Coupe 6.2 V8, the other models aren’t supercars.
In the top 10 list of gas guzzlers, the Lamborghini Aventador is the most polluting car, closely followed by the Bentley Continental GTC Supersports, which emits 362g of CO2 per km, and the Maserati GranTurismo 4.7 litre V8, 360g of CO2/km.
Although these cars will be charged the highest amount of road tax in the first year, it’s doubtful the owners of these cars will feel too out of pocket, as the average on-the-road price of cars in the top VED band is £160,307. For example, the Rolls Royce Dawn 6.6 litre V12 Black Badge, emits one of the highest levels of CO2/km at 337g, and will set you back £312,535.
The following table reveals the Top 10 cars in the highest VED band, that have the highest CO2 emission levels:
Alex Buttle, director of car buying comparison website Motorway.co.uk comments:
“It’s quite shocking that the most polluting new supercars in our research emit nearly 400g of CO2 per km, which to put that in context is four times that of an average family car like the new Volvo XC40 which emits around 130g/km. But let’s face it, no-one buys one of these beefy gas guzzlers for their fuel efficiency or environmental credentials.
“And with the worst polluters being Lambos, Bentleys and Ferraris which are most popular amongst the super-rich, the government’s highest road tax fee of £2,070 is unlikely to put any kind of dent in their owner’s wallet.
“Which does beg the question, when the average purchase price of these cars is more than £160,000, why isn’t the VED rate at the top level even higher? With some of these cars costing more than a small house in some parts of the UK, could VED be means tested?”
● 52% of car owners say they don’t expect to switch to an electric car soon because of the UK’s inadequate charging infrastructure^
● Poole, Dorset has the UK’s highest percentage of properties with private off-street parking, offering more electric car home charging opportunities
● London has the lowest percentage of properties with private off-street parking, meaning less potential for home charging points
Poole, in Dorset, is the most electric car-friendly town in the UK, while London, not surprisingly, is the least friendly, according to research into home car charging by Motorway.co.uk, the car buying comparison website.
Analysing the towns and cities that are best placed to create a substantial home charging network, Motorway.co.uk assessed the percentage of homes currently on the market in major towns and cities with private, off-street parking, enabling households to easily install an electric charge point and power up their vehicles at home.
Motorway.co.uk used new properties for sale data* as a gauge of total and type of housing stock, to reveal the areas with the biggest opportunities and challenges for home charging.
The Government has said it wants all petrol and diesel cars off UK roads by 2040 to be replaced by more environmentally-friendly electric cars. For that to happen, motorists need to be able to charge their electric vehicles easily and cheaply. However, a recent electric car survey of car owners by Motorway.co.uk revealed that more than half (52%) said they weren’t planning to switch to electric any time soon because of the UK’s inadequate charging infrastructure^.
Motorway.co.uk’s home charging research revealed that Poole has the highest percentage of current properties for sale with off-street parking. In Poole, more than 9 in 10 properties on the market have some form of private parking, so the Dorset town is perfectly set up to create a home charging network over the next 10-15 years. Similarly, Solihull and Chelmsford have more than 90% of current properties on the market with off-street parking.
This is in stark contrast to London, where less than half (48.6%) of properties on the market have off-street parking available. This presents a headache for residents who currently have to drive to a public charging points and local councils who will need to build more shared charging units to cope with demand. Comparing boroughs, 83.7% of properties for sale in Havering have off-street parking, while only 19.3% in Islington do.
Further research by Motorway.co.uk also reveals that 80.7% of properties for sale in London are flats or terraced houses. Although many have off-street parking, that doesn’t mean electric charging points can be installed, as it’s likely the freeholder will own the land and the flat owner will have to get their permission – and potentially pay a pricey levy.
The problem is even more severe in some boroughs. Motorway.co.uk research reveals in a third of London boroughs, 95% of housing stock is made up of terraced houses and flats, which will either have no private parking, shared parking, or allocated bay parking, where the land is not owned by the homeowner.
The challenge facing the Government is ensuring that electric car charging infrastructure can handle the 2040 switch over to electric and hybrid vehicles. And a vital component of this network will be home charging, as many people will want the option of leaving their cars charging overnight at home, not on the street.
But that in itself creates its own problem, as a large number of properties in the UK, particularly terraced houses and flats, won’t have driveways or off-street parking, or if they do, there will need to be multiple charging points installed for all flats to use at considerable cost.
The following table shows the most electric car friendly UK towns and cities, with the highest percentage of properties with private, off-street parking:
The following table shows the least electric car friendly UK towns and cities, with the lowest percentage of properties with private, off-street parking:
The following table shows the London boroughs with the highest and lowest percentage of properties with private, off-street parking:
Alex Buttle, director of car buying comparison website Motorway.co.uk comments:
“The physical shape of Britain’s housing stock could put a spanner in the works of the Government’s electric switch over plans. Although many car owners can expect to have access to on-street charging stations, there’s no guarantee there will be enough to go around.
“Most people will want the convenience of charging their car at home rather than having to walk to a main road to pick up their vehicle. Home charging is usually fine if you have a detached or semi-detached house with a driveway, but what about the millions of people who live in flats and terraced houses with no private, off-street parking?
“As the country moves closer to the 2040 Government deadline proposed for a UK-wide diesel and petrol vehicle ban, the need for an electric car charging infrastructure becomes ever-more critical. We are talking about more than 30 million new power-hungry electric cars on the road by then if the switch over happens as expected.
“The big question that needs to be answered is how will most people be able to charge their vehicles at home? In some towns, the type of property stock will make it a lot easier to create a home charging infrastructure, but the challenge will be in urban areas with a high density of flats such as London, where off-street parking is limited.
“If the UK needs more on-street charging stations, that is a cost that cash-strapped councils will need to meet. Will there really be enough funds available to power a shared charging network for 30 million cars by 2040?”
Data and methodology
^In February 2018, Motorway.co.uk’s own research suggested 52% of people do not expect to switch to electric because of the UK’s inadequate charging structure
* Motorway.co.uk used publicly available property data for this research. Data was aggregated by looking at a number of market-leading property websites
40% more supercars on UK roads than 5 years ago, while the broader UK car market has declined by 9.3%*
69% rise in Ferraris and 54% rise in Lamborghinis registered compared to 2013
There are 40% more supercars on UK roads than there were five years ago, according to research by car buying comparison site Motorway.co.uk. Slowing consumer spending and a declining car market haven’t stalled the rise of the supercar, as the numbers registered to drive on UK roads has increased by almost 8% (7.7%) in the past year alone.
26% of UK car buyers expect to be purchasing an electric or hybrid car within six years, compared to just 4.2% of new cars sold being AFVs in 2017
Green credentials are the most significant reason for those looking to move away from fossil fuels, with 45% citing electric being ‘better for the environment’ as the main driver
London, 27th February 2018 – More than a quarter of UK car buyers expect to be purchasing an alternatively fuelled car by 2024, according to a nationwide survey conducted by car buying comparison website Motorway.
Motorway.co.uk polled 2,000 UK car owners, asking them about their next car purchase and views on electric cars. The survey revealed that of those planning to buy another car in the next six years, 26% expect to buy alternatively fuelled vehicle (an AFV), with 11% planning on electric and 15% going for a hybrid car.
AFVs made up just 4.2% of sales in 2017 according to new car registration figures from the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT)*.
These new figures from Motorway.co.uk therefore suggest a rapid increase in take-up of alternatively fuelled vehicles ahead.
Motorway.co.uk looked at the car buying plans of motorists across different age groups. The data suggested differences in attitudes between older and younger car owners to electric and hybrid car ownership:
13% of car owners aged 18-34 expect to buy an electric car next, compared to 10% of 35-54 year olds and 9% of respondents aged 55+.
Meanwhile, as the range of hybrid options has grown, older demographics had a particular fondness for hybrid fuel types with 19% of 55-plus year old respondents saying they would buy a hybrid next, compared to 13% of those aged 18-34.
Diesel vehicles continued their slide in popularity, with just over a quarter of respondents (26%) expecting to buy a diesel as their next car.
Reasons for buying electric
Of the respondents who said they expected to go electric in the next six years, 45% said it was because electric was better for the environment, showing that electric’s green credentials are the biggest driver. More than a third (34%) said they’re opting for an electric car because they’re cheaper to run, 28% said the more advanced technology attracted them and 18% said that a better driving experience was the main appeal.
Respondents who said they would stick with traditional fuel types for their next new car were asked why they were put off buying electric cars. More than half (52%) said that inadequate charging infrastructure, including not being able to charge a car at home, was stopping them from making the switch to electric.
Over a third (35%) said that electric cars were still too expensive compared to fossil-fuelled options, and more than a quarter (27%) said they did not know enough about electric cars and the technology to make a decision.
Comparing male and female drivers, a slightly higher percentage of females (27%) than males (26%) expect their next car (within the next six years) to be an AFV. While 12% of women expect their next car to be fully-electric, compared to just 10% of male car owners.
Alex Buttle, director of car buying comparison website Motorway, comments:
“Our survey clearly shows that UK public are getting ready to make the leap to electric cars en masse and that take-up may be much more rapid than many expect.
“The soaring demand presents huge opportunities for the car industry, which is showing significant signs of stress while battling to roll out affordable AFVs fast enough. But it could also leave the Government with serious issues if it does not move fast enough to build the necessary charging and power infrastructure to handle the impact of electric cars**.
“Our data shows people do not know enough about their options when it comes to electric cars. If industry and Government are keen to accelerate this switchover to electric, then clearly more needs to be done to educate UK car buyers.
“With consumer confidence falling pre-Brexit and rising inflation eroding disposable income, many are worried electric cars are too expensive to own. In reality, studies have shown electric will be the cheapest of all fuel options to run in just a few years’ time^.
“Aside from current consumer sentiment, the raw economics of electric car ownership in a few years time can be expected to speed up the switch away from fossil fuel cars faster than many industry commentators ever expected.”
Prices for used diesel cars are up £322 (+2.4%) on average since start of 2018.
This comes after diesel prices dropped 5% through 2017
Equivalent petrol car prices fell 0.7% since the beginning of the year as the market re-balances
Nine out of ten major car brands saw diesel prices drop between Q1 2017 and Q1 2018, compared to half of petrol variants
The average price of a used diesel car has increased by 2.4% since the start of 2018. This puts an end to the downward spiral on diesel prices throughout 2017 when values tumbled on the back of constant negative news. The analysis from car buying comparison website Motorway.co.uk also shows equivalent used petrol cars have fallen 0.7% since the start of this year.
Motorway.co.uk analysed valuations for more than 60,000 used diesel and petrol cars aged five years old or less, valued on its website between January 2017 and April 2018.
Monthly figures reveal the average price of a used diesel during April 2018 was £13,637, compared to £13,315 in December 2017 – a rise of 2.4%. The average used petrol car price in April 2018 was £9,477, down 0.7% on the average price in December 2017 of £9,543.
However, after the aggressive price falls last year, average diesel prices are still substantially lower than the same time last year, dropping from £14,339 in Q1 2017 to £13,640 in Q1 2018 – a difference of almost £700 or -4.9%. This compares with the average price of a used petrol car, which has risen from £8,916 to £9,754 (7.8%) during the same period, as diesel fears switched buying habits towards petrol variants.
The following table shows average quarterly prices of used diesel and petrol cars (only vehicles less than five years old) across 2017 and 2018:
Motorway.co.uk also analysed diesel and petrol valuation data for individual car makes. The research revealed significant differences in how used cars for different brands have fared over the past 12 months.
Looking at the top 10 most popular makes valued on Motorway.co.uk during 2017 and 2018, nine out of 10 saw a drop in the value of diesel variants between Q1 2017 and Q1 2018, compared to just half of petrol variants.
The average price of a used Vauxhall diesel car slumped by 13.4% over the past year, falling more than £1,000 from £8,098 in Q1 2017 to £7,009 in Q1 2018. The average price of a Volkswagen, still fighting to restore its reputation after the 2015 emissions scandal, was down more than £1,500 from £12,473 to £10,886 over the same period.
The average price of a used Ford diesel fell by 4.1% between Q1 2017 and Q1 2018, compared to the average price of petrol variants which rose by 12.9% over the past 12 months.
The following table shows average used diesel and petrol car values for popular makes of car, comparing Q1 2017 and Q1 2018:
Alex Buttle, director of car buying comparison website Motorway.co.uk comments:
“A 2.4% rise in average values isn’t quite diesel’s ‘phoenix from the flames’ moment, but it is a positive step after a year of significant price falls. Having been demonised by the Government and ripped apart by the press, it seems diesel’s price slump has now reached the bottom and valuations are finally showing signs of resilience.
“Values were never going to fall forever, and buyers are now finding some incredible used diesel car deals at very attractive prices. More diesel buyers are being lured back into the second-hand car market and this is stabilising pricing.
“That said, diesel will remain the pariah fuel type until more is done to educate the public about cleaner Euro-6 diesel engines found in recent diesel models. These cars release vastly less nitrogen oxides than older variants and are actually cleaner than many petrol engines on some CO2 measurements.
“The least the Government can do is to help motorists by vouching for modern diesel engines over older variants and make it clear that not every diesel car on the market is the same. Until then, confusion will reign and diesel prices may suffer the brunt of this befuddlement.”
Investigation by Motorway reveals car buying sites often give inflated online valuations to attract customers. The company has released “TruePrice” technology to improve valuation accuracy
Motorway data suggest 60% of sellers received less than their online valuation on day of sale
Investigation shows buyers ‘chip down’ price when the car is inspected by an average of 6%
Motorway launches its TruePrice online tech to improve the accuracy of buyers’ online valuations
An in-depth investigation into online used car sales by Motorway.co.uk has found that some instant car buying websites quote unrealistically high car valuations online to attract customers, but then offer significantly less on the actual day of sale.
This practice, known in the industry as ‘price chipping’, has become so commonplace that six out of ten car sellers received less than their original online valuation on the day of sale. Just 40% of sellers received the original valuation they were quoted.
The investigations revealed that prices were ‘chipped’ by 6% on average – that’s a huge £600 on a £10,000 vehicle.
To collate its figures, Motorway the UK’s leading car selling comparison website, analysed more than 4,000 completed sale transactions through instant online car buyers featured on its website, supplementing this data by surveying customers that sold to other car buyers that don’t feature.
Motorway compared the actual sale prices received for each car sold with its original online valuation. It found that while cars valued above £5,000 were chipped down by 6% on average, for those below £5,000, the average ‘chip down’ was as high as 11%.
To put this into context, a 6% chip down on a high-end car valued at £35,000 would mean a £2,000 reduction in the price at the point of sale. On a car valued at £4,550, an 11% reduction would see the valuation reduced by £500 on inspection.
But Motorway’s data showed that not all car buying services take the same approach. Some do offer realistic valuations online, which rarely change by much at all on the day of sale, while others have an average chip down rate of up to 14%.
Why are prices reduced on the day of sale?
Professional car buyers have to make reasonable assumptions on the condition and history of a vehicle in order to generate an instant valuation online, and this is notoriously difficult. If a buyer assumes that a car being valued is in ‘fair-to-good’ condition, they should expect the car to have some wear and tear consistent with its age and mileage, and present a valuation that reflects this.
While some changes to online prices are inevitable, some buyers assume all used cars valued are in perfect showroom condition despite their age – and very few are. This leads to significant reductions for typical vehicles when light scratches, dents and other normal wear-and-tear is revealed on the day of sale.
Motorway found that sales were much less likely to fall through when buyers priced realistically.
Solving the problem – TruePrice
Launched in 2017, Motorway.co.uk is a price comparison website enabling car sellers to compare offers from online car buying websites in order to find their best price. Having completed thousands of successful car sales to its panel of online buyers, Motorway today unveils its own technology called TruePrice that enables sellers to compare actual likely sale prices for their car, as well as the online offers provided by buyers.
With TruePrice, Motorway is working to deliver more accurate online valuations and a greater level of price confidence for consumers. It’s an industry first in a sector crying out for transparency.
How does TruePrice work?
Motorway proprietary TruePrice technology uses ‘guide price’ instant valuations from online buyers, and analyses historical sale prices from thousands of similar completed sales in order to calculate what customers are statistically likely to receive for their car in ‘fair-to-good’ condition.
Comparing TruePrice offers, car owners can make a more informed selling decision in seconds.
Alex Buttle, director, car buying comparison website Motorway.co.uk comments:
“Consumers are increasingly looking to sell their car online to car buying sites because the process is quick, hassle-free and there are some great instant deals to be found. Many sellers simply don’t have time to wait for offers on classified sites or to drive between car dealerships to negotiate a good price. Selling online is the fastest way to get a vehicle sold and it’s why the instant online car buying industry is growing at around 15% a year.
“But speed and convenience should not mean consumers have to accept unnecessary price reductions as part and parcel of selling online. Not all buyers routinely inflate their online valuations, but sadly chipping has become so widespread that many consumers have already accepted it as common practice. Unrealistic online valuations could really damage the reputation of this growing industry if it’s not tackled head-on.
“We felt it was time to introduce smart technology to solve this problem, so we developed TruePrice to bring pricing clarity and transparency to motorists across the UK. Car buyers featured on the Motorway.co.uk platform are now actively collaborating with us to instantly provide the most accurate valuations they can for sellers, that reflect the money customers ultimately end up receiving.
“Price transparency has transformed every other e-commerce space, it’s about time the car industry embraced the inevitable transition to a consumer-first, data-led experience. Car sellers deserve to be empowered with technology and should never be treated like ‘valuation victims’.”
Notes to Editors
Data and methodology
Buyer chip down rates were calculated by looking at the difference between online car buyer valuations and the price sellers actually received on the day of sale. Motorway analysed the online valuations and final sale prices for over 4,000 completed instant car buyer sales through it’s comparison platform during the past 12 months.
The awards were presented online by Mike Brewer, star of Discovery Channel TV show Wheeler Dealers on Friday 5th February.
Well done to our fantastic team for all your hard work throughout a challenging year. Thanks too to our incredible dealers – we love working with you, and are always proud to serve you with exclusive privately-owned stock.
Finally, a big thank you to Mike Brewer for hosting the event, all the judges, Car Dealer Magazine, James Baggott and Michelle Searle for your support. What a year!
Motorway sales director James Bush said:
“We are delighted to have been awarded Highly Commended in the Used Car Product category in this year’s Used Car Awards.
“It’s testament to the hard work our team have put in to provide a truly market-leading product and service for the dealer community, especially during the pandemic.
“Our unique offering of high-spec, privately owned used vehicle stock – all online and without the middle men – has attracted more car dealers than ever this last year.
“This recognition from the judges is a great validation of our mission towards providing the best possible, most efficient online stock-acquisition platform for the long term.”
Dealers can sign up to buy exclusive, privately-owned used car stock at Motorway here.