The shortage of vehicles drives up prices and leaves many voids
ODESSA, Texas (KOSA) – COVID-19 cases are on the decline across the country, which means most of the country is opening up. But the speed at which it opens up creates production problems for some industries accustomed to a pandemic market.
This includes the automotive market.
“We are getting fewer and fewer cars,” said Justin Slaughter, general manager of Lithia Toyota.
Slaughter has worked in the automotive industry for over twenty years.
“I’ve never seen anything like it before,” he said.
But it’s what you can’t see that’s the problem.
“Last April we had 300 new cars on the lot,” Slaughter said. “In April, we had 75 cars on the ground. At the beginning of this May, we had four new cars in the field. “
Times were already lean for dealerships during the pandemic.
“And then they had this shortage of chips,” he said.
Slaughter talks about computer chips, a technology the size of a nickel. Their lack is slowing automobile production across the country. The country is simply opening up faster than production can meet demand.
This is a problem that companies like CARFAX have seen changing the market.
“Truck prices are up almost 44% from where they were at the same time last year,” said Smilie Voss, director of public relations for CARFAX. “We saw this as the segment with the biggest price increase, but also SUVs. “
This is good news if you are trying to sell a car, but not so good if you are looking to buy one.
So when will all of this end? Voss and Slaughter believe the shortage will last until at least fall and possibly next year.
“You know, I can do the best I can with what we have and keep a positive attitude and continue to serve and help our customers the best that we can,” Slaughter said.
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