New Car Prices Reach All-Time High in October

New Car Prices Reach All-Time High in October

Car shoppers still flock to SUVs amid rising prices, payments and interest rates

SANTA MONICA, Calif. — November 1, 2017 — The average transaction price of a new vehicle hit a record $35,428 in October, according to the analysts at Edmunds, the leading car shopping and information platform. This is a 2 percent increase compared to October of 2016 and an 12 percent increase compared to October of 2012. The average down payment on a new car also reached record territory in October, hitting $3,966. This is up $374 compared to October of 2016 and $454 from five years ago.

"The shift away from passenger cars in favor of trucks and SUVs is impacting all facets of the auto market," said Jessica Caldwell, executive director of industry analysis for Edmunds. "Interest rates are rising and bigger vehicles have higher price tags, but so far car shoppers don't seem to be shying away from putting more money down or having a higher monthly payment to drive the vehicle they want."

Despite strong demand for trucks and SUVs, automakers are struggling to move lagging 2017 inventory off dealer lots. In October, 72 percent of new vehicles sold were 2017 model year, while last October, 60 percent of new vehicles sold were 2016 model year. Five years ago, only 46 percent of the new vehicles sold in October were from the 2012 model year. Incentives last month remained at a near-record high of $3,472 per vehicle; however, Edmunds analysts say automakers are going to have to be even more aggressive if they want to move inventory.

"Clearing out old inventory is expensive, especially when automakers are forced to deeply discount passenger cars, which already have thin profit margins," Caldwell said. "With two months left in the year and this much inventory remaining, we expect to see some very creative year-end sales events to entice car shoppers."

  October 2017 October 2016 October 2012
Term 69.19 68.95 65.41
Monthly Payment $516 $514 $469
Amount Financed $30,866 $30,952 $27,043
APR 4.95 4.56 4.23
Down Payment $3,966 $3,592 $3,512


October 2017 October 2016 October 2012
Term 66.8 66.8 63.5
Monthly Payment $386 $380 $363
Amount Financed $21,318 $21,122 $19,015
APR 7.6 7.3 8.1
Down Payment $2,529 $2,360 $2,152


More insight into recent auto industry trends can be found in the Edmunds Industry Center at //

About Edmunds
Edmunds is the leading car information and shopping platform, helping millions of visitors each month find their perfect car. With products such as Edmunds Your Price, Your Lease and Used+, shoppers can buy smarter with instant, upfront prices for cars and trucks currently for sale at more than 13,000 dealer franchises across the U.S. Edmunds' in-house team of unbiased car-shopping experts provide industry-leading vehicle reviews and shopping tips, as well as welcome all car-shopping questions to the free Shopper Advice line at 1-855-782-4711, via email at, via text at ED411 and on Twitter and Facebook. The company is regarded as one of America's best workplaces by Fortune and Great Place to Work. Edmunds is based in Santa Monica, California, and has a satellite office in downtown Detroit, Michigan.

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