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Second hand car prices soar amid the coronavirus pandemic with Australians avoiding public transport

Second-hand car prices have skyrocketed since the pandemic began with Australians avoiding public transport over fears they will get coronavirus.

The huge demand for used cars during the COVID-19 crisis has driven up their value by at least 25 per cent in comparison to August 2019. 

Used car prices soared by 11.2 per cent and ute prices grew by 10.6 per cent just from April to May, according to Australian vehicle data from Moody's Analytics.   

Demand for used cars has soared during the coronavirus pandemic with Australians (woman on a Sydney bus pictured) driving the price up by 25 per cent compared to August 2019 

The surge in demand for second-hand cars (car dealership in Melbourne pictured) was prompted by lower fuel prices and a fear of contracting COVID-19 on public transport 

The record annual growth rate comes after the cars initially dropped in value at the height of the pandemic in April. 

The staggering rise has also surpassed the 20 per cent value increase that was seen after the global financial crisis in 2009. 

Auto Economist at Moody's Analytics, Michael Brisson, said 'low fuel costs and a decline in use of public transportation' had driven up the cost of used cars.

'Consumers will continue to prefer driving over public transportation while a vaccine or treatment option for COVID-19 remains elusive,' he explained. 

A Moody's research report showed that lower petrol costs during the pandemic had also improved the overall cost of car ownership. 

The price of used cars climbed throughout the year with an increase of 4.7 per cent in July and 7 per cent in August. 

Moody's analysts explained that Australians were still continuing to purchase cars in order to avoid using public transport.  

'The increased demand for vehicles is coming from people who have continued to shun group mobility.

The price of used cars is expected to remain high into 2021 as Australians continue to avoid public transport (women in masks at a Sydney bus stop pictured) over coronavirus fears 

'This change in preference has been in response to fear of contracting the virus or, in some cases, not wanting to deal with the hassles of increased precautions,' the report read.  

The pandemic has pushed the wholesale car market up by at least 23 per cent and ute prices by 32 per cent compared to lower values across 2018 and 2019. 

This demand for used cars and avoidance of public transport has also been recorded in other wealthy countries around the world, including European nations and the United States. 

Brendon Green, general manager for motor vehicles at used car company Pickles, said it was common for second-hand car demand to increase during a crisis.   

'We anticipate that used car prices and sales will remain quite high for some time, possibly right through 2021,' Mr Green told The Sydney Morning Herald. 

'We always find buyers gravitate to used vehicles during difficult economic climates or when consumer confidence is low as they are watching their budget.'  

A similar trend of purchasing used cars and avoiding public transport has also been seen in other wealthy countries across Europe and the USA (woman pictured on a Sydney bus)  

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