New Car Sales Are Plummeting Because Automakers Can't Make Enough Cars

New Car Sales Are Plummeting Because Automakers Can't Make Enough Cars

Analysts forecast a SAAR of 12.3M in September as inventory shortages continue to squeeze the industry

SANTA MONICA, CA — September 29, 2021 — The car shopping experts at Edmunds forecast that 3,416,266 new cars and trucks will be sold in the U.S. in the third quarter of 2021, which reflects a 13% decrease from the third quarter of 2020 and a 22.7% decrease compared to the second quarter of 2021.

"New vehicle sales in the third quarter have been a direct reflection of the worsening chipset and inventory situation. Although consumer demand continues to run high, sales have continued to slide downward each month because there simply aren't enough of the vehicles that shoppers want," said Jessica Caldwell, Edmunds' executive director of insights. "The entire U.S. auto industry — including the Asian manufacturers, which were doing a bit better than their domestic counterparts until recently — is in an incredibly volatile position right now and we are seeing inflated retail prices across the board. It's growing extraordinarily hard to predict who will come out on top heading into the rest of the year, as every automaker is at the mercy of its suppliers and challenged logistics around the globe."

Since Edmunds analysts expect this volatility to continue through the rest of 2021, they advise car shoppers to do extra research, be flexible, and brace themselves for higher prices and increased competition if they know they need to make a new vehicle purchase soon.

"If you're one of the millions of Americans with a lease ending this year and are happy with the car you have, consider buying out your vehicle or extending your lease to avoid the hassle of making a new purchase," said Ivan Drury, Edmunds' senior manager of insights. "If you do need to get into a new vehicle and see anything you like at this point, it's best to bite the bullet and make the purchase immediately. Don't wait as the situation could get worse, and don't try to pit dealers against one another for the best price: You'll more than likely end up empty-handed because there will likely be plenty of other shoppers vying for the same vehicle."

SALES VOLUME FORECAST, BY MANUFACTURER

Sales Volume 2021 Q3 Forecast Q3 2020 Sales Q2 2021 Sales Change from Q3 2020 Change from Q2 2021
Toyota 563,089 558,449 688,813 0.8% -18.3%
GM 456,031 665,277 688,638 -31.5% -33.8%
Stellantis 418,214 507,351 487,241 -17.6% -14.2%
Ford 390,238 551,796 475,334 -29.3% -17.9%
Hyundai/Kia 373,964 339,586 470,594 10.1% -20.5%
Honda 370,198 388,433 486,419 -4.7% -23.9%
Nissan 206,185 221,150 298,148 -6.8% -30.8%
VW/Audi 138,522 135,063 190,419 2.6% -27.3%
Industry 3,416,266 3,924,968 4,419,738 -13.0% -22.7%

MARKET SHARE FORECAST, BY MANUFACTURER

Market Share 2021 Q3 Forecast Q3 2020 Sales Q2 2021 Sales Change from Q3 2020 Change from Q2 2021
Toyota 16.5% 14.2% 15.6% 15.8% 5.8%
GM 13.3% 16.9% 15.6% -21.2% -14.3%
Stellantis 12.2% 12.9% 11.0% -5.3% 11.0%
Ford 11.4% 14.1% 10.8% -18.7% 6.2%
Hyundai/Kia 10.9% 8.7% 10.6% 26.5% 2.8%
Honda 10.8% 9.9% 11.0% 9.5% -1.5%
Nissan 6.0% 5.6% 6.7% 7.1% -10.5%
VW/Audi 4.1% 3.4% 4.3% 17.8% -5.9%

About Edmunds
Edmunds guides car shoppers online from research to purchase. With in-depth reviews of every new vehicle, shopping tips from an in-house team of experts, plus a wealth of consumer and automotive market insights, Edmunds helps millions of shoppers each month select, price and buy a car with confidence. 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 Detroit, Michigan. Follow us on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.



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