Sales of used cars declined by 8.5% in the UK last year, new figures show.
The Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) said just 6.9 million vehicles changed hands in 2022, down from 7.5 million during the previous 12 months.
The industry body said a squeeze on the supply of new cars restricted the amount of stock entering the second-hand market.
Used battery electric cars bucked the trend, with a record 71,071 sold in 2022.
That represents a 37.5% year-on-year increase.
Overall transactions increased by 0.8% in December compared with the same month in 2021.
This was the first monthly rise since February 2022, reflecting the recent growth seen in the new car market.
SMMT chief executive Mike Hawes said: “While the market headlines are negative and reflective of the squeeze on new car supply last year, record electrified vehicle uptake is a bright spot and demonstrates a growing appetite for these models.
“With new car registrations growth expected this year, more of the latest low and zero emission models should become available to second owners.
“Accelerating uptake is key and will be dependent on drivers being assured of a positive ownership experience.
“This means ensuring charging infrastructure keeps pace with demand as more new and used car buyers make the switch to zero-emission motoring than ever before.”
The total of 6.9 million used cars changing hands in 2022 was the second lowest annual amount since 2012.
Just 6.8 million were sold in 2020 amid coronavirus lockdowns.
Ian Plummer, commercial director at online vehicle marketplace Auto Trader, said: “Lingering supply issues held back used car sales against an exceptional 2021 performance, but the market has great momentum and last month we saw a record 80 million visits to our site – nearly 10 million more than a year ago.
“For most motorists, cars are a fundamental need, especially given the current public transport disruption.”
James Baggott, editor of Car Dealer Magazine, said: “Car dealers told us their biggest issue in 2022 was getting hold of used car stock.
“This kept already very high used car prices buoyant throughout the year and that has continued into the start of 2023.”
Alex Buttle, co-founder of used car marketplace Motorway.co.uk, said: “Used electric vehicles were hot property last year.
“Motorists fed up with waiting times for new models turned to the used market to make a quick and affordable leap to electric.”
Published: by Radio NewsHub