scheduled tribe. LOUIS (KMOV.com) — At Jim Butler Chevrolet in Fenton, President Brad Sowers says new cars can’t come fast enough to meet buyer demand.
“Typically I have 1,000 new cars to sell,” Sowers said. “We are now on the lot at 15 cars.”
Many of Chevy’s hottest models, such as the Colorado truck made in Wentzville, are now being affected even more as General Motors halted production at the plant and at other facilities across the country for two weeks.
“While we have our best ever demand for new cars, the bad news is that the supply of new vehicles for our company is dwindling mostly due to a lack of global chip supply,” Sowers said.
The global shortage of computer chips continues to worsen, forcing automakers to temporarily close factories, including those on popular pickup trucks.
It’s not just the lack of chips that is affecting the availability of new cars. Other supply issues, production halts during COVID-19 and consumer interest in buying new cars have created an issue where demand exceeds supply.
The supply crunch is also troubling other car makers, which are causing some delays on when and how many new car dealerships they can get.
“We’ll usually have 300 in stock and we’ll run with about a 90-day supply. Most manufacturers are telling us we’re probably going to see a 30-to-45 best case. Probably going into 2022,” said Aaron Patton, sales director at Suntrup Automotive. “Good point, the benefit for the consumer right now is that the MSRP has remained the same.”
Patton says the other benefit for the consumer is that dealerships are increasing demand for trade-in vehicles to fill their lots.
“If you look at most dealers’ inventory, used cars are probably 75 percent of what they stocked a year ago, so everyone is changing a little bit,” Patton said. “Consumers are getting a lot for their business in the annals of time.”
However, if you plan to buy new, the dealership says it is not necessary to wait until the inventory improves.
“Your view is that the price is just higher because of the supply, but in reality, all prices are going up,” Sowers said. “So, if you think you can save by waiting, you’ll probably lose with the price increase for 2022 and 2023.”
Dealers say car buyers are also getting used to knowing that new inventory may not be as abundant as in previous years.
“There will be some vehicles out there, we won’t have double and triple the amount of inventory to see some people, but a lot of people have adapted to that,” Patton said. “They are pre-ordered vehicles.”
Copyright 2021 KMOV (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved