Thursday, 24 September 2020 17:49

New Vehicle Retail Sales Make a Roaring Comeback in the Third Quarter, Edmunds Forecasts


The car shopping experts at Edmunds say that the third quarter represents a positive turning point for the automotive industry despite challenges presented by the coronavirus pandemic.

Edmunds analysts forecast that 3,850,707 new cars and trucks will be sold in the U.S., which reflects an 11% decrease from the third quarter of 2019 but a 30.6% increase compared to the second quarter of the year.


"Third-quarter sales make at least two things apparent: Most of the doomsday scenarios forecasted at the beginning of the pandemic fortunately did not hold true, and the American consumer stepped up to become one of the many heroes in this chapter of resilience for the automotive industry," said Jessica Caldwell, Edmunds' executive director of insights.


"Consistently lower interest rates encouraged new-car buyers---who were less likely to be financially hindered by the economic fallout of the pandemic---to pull the trigger on a purchase," Caldwell continued. "Rising used vehicle prices also likely made the new car market more appealing for shoppers on the fence between the two. And car owners also got to leverage the extra value that trade-ins are commanding during COVID-19 to offset the cost of their next purchase."


Although retail sales have shown positive growth, Edmunds experts note that fleet sales continue to struggle during the pandemic. Edmunds estimates that fleet transactions will account for 10.8% of total sales for the third quarter, compared to 17.2% in the third quarter of 2019 and 13.2% last quarter.

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