Auto Trader's, one of Europe's most popular car-related websites, is setting new digital benchmarks as its explosive growth continues.

In March, for the first time, the site received a billion page impressions in a single month. There were also a million more unique users in March than there had been in the same month last year. With 600,000 monthly unique users, the recently introduced New Car section of the site is also proving to be very popular with car buyers and enthusiasts. Overall, according to Experian's Hitwise, Autotrader is Britain's seventh most searched for brand on line.

Mobile access to Auto Trader's online classified advertising and other content is growing strongly too; there are a million unique users for the company's mobile applications for platforms such as iPhone and Android, while the AutoTrader iPhone application has now been downloaded a million times. The availability of Auto Trader's information for car-buyers on the move is fundamentally altering the way they behave; a third of those using Auto Trader's mobile apps are accessing information for research or to compare prices while they're out and about on dealers' forecourts looking for their next car.

And's users aren't just looking stuff up. The site is increasingly becoming an inter-active forum for the exchange of information between car buyers. Over 21,000 contributions have been made to the Owner Reviews section – and punters who buy their cars with their own money don't always agree with the experts. The Nissan Micra convertible, once branded “the most embarrassing car in the world” by Jeremy Clarkson, enjoys an average rating of 4.1 out of 5.

The big draw for most visitors to the site, of course, are the used and new car listings; at any one time, there are usually about 400,000 cars being offered for sale, which means there's something for everyone – and that there's always someone looking for their next car at all times of day or night. The most popular time for searches is at 8pm on Mondays when 90,000 users hit the site as soon as the closing credits for Coronation Street start to roll. On the other hand 42,800 were using the site between midnight and 2am each night in March too. Thousands of obsessed British car fans take a break from the monotony of office tasks by sneaking a look at during the day; now we know that the country's most addictive motoring website is wrecking their sleeping patterns as well.

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