SANTA MONICA, CA — June 28, 2022 — The car shopping experts from Edmunds forecast that 3,498,769 new cars and trucks will be sold in the U.S. in the second quarter of 2022, which will be a 20.8% decrease from the second quarter of 2021 but a 5.1% increase compared to the first quarter of 2022. According to Edmunds data, the second quarter historically is a stronger selling period compared to the first quarter for new vehicles: Q2 sales were approximately 10% higher on average compared to Q1 between 2017 to 2019. Edmunds analysts note that this year's softer quarter-over-quarter increase is an indicator of how the automotive market is being squeezed.
"Elevated gas prices and rising interest rates only intensified the struggles faced by car shoppers amid ongoing inventory shortages in the second quarter," said Jessica Caldwell, Edmunds' executive director of insights. "The majority of consumers who are purchasing vehicles in these conditions are either in a financial position where money is less of a consideration or are doing so out of absolute necessity."
Edmunds analysts expect supply challenges to stick around for the foreseeable future, and they advise car shoppers to temper their expectations for car shopping deals through the Fourth of July weekend and the rest of the year.
"Although most people are used to the end-of-summer and end-of-model-year sales events, automakers and dealers likely won't be rolling out the barbecue grills or wacky waving tube men to promote discounts this year because they won't have a surplus of inventory to clear. Consumers in this market should be determining when they actually need to buy a car instead of holding out for big sales events," said Caldwell. "Looking ahead, a recovery in vehicle production in 2022 seems highly unlikely at this point, but a bright spot for the industry is that profit margins are staying high and pent-up consumer demand will only continue to build as shortages continue."
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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, Great Place to Work and Built In, Edmunds is based in Santa Monica, California. Follow us on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.