That’s two years in a row.
The world of the car dealer seems like the proverbial ‘going uphill both ways’ these days.
Normally the arrival of spring and the transition into summer are prime time for those who sell new vehicles for a living. But the past couple years have delivered some unique challenges to the industry.
Last year, obviously, it was COVID. We saw sales of new vehicles dry up when the lockdown was announced…falling sharply for weeks before consumers finally felt confident enough to make such a major investment. Monthly activity rose from 1,800 new units being sold in April last year to almost 5,000 by late summer.
Things seemed to be righting themselves but along came the second leg of the double whammy – supply chain interruptions.
Automotive assembly involves parts come from all over the world – often very sophisticated components – fashioned into a finished product at a central factory. But COVID interrupted shipping and the big shortage today is microchips delaying factory deliveries….leaving dealers with sharply reduced inventory….making it hard to sell something you don’t have on hand.