Entries in New Car (3)


Average Cost of New Car Rises to over $28K, Report Finds

Comstock/Thinkstock(WESTLAKE VILLAGE, Calif.) -- Consumers are now forking over more dough than ever to buy a car, an indication that the auto industry is steering back onto the road after swerving off four years ago.

J.D. Power and Associates' 2012 annual automotive industry outlook reports that it now costs on average $28,341 to buy a new car -- an 11 percent jump from 2008.

The increase in price is partly attributed to in-vehicle entertainment features that now come standard in many models.

Another reason consumers are digging deeper in their pockets than in the recent past is due to cash rebates and other incentives falling by $400 from years ago.

Naturally, the huge profits automakers are enjoying after languishing for years come with a caveat from National Automobile Dealers Association executive John Humphrey, who says, "We see increasing optimism but the auto maker discipline in production must remain."

J.D. Power also warns that the industry must be wary of consumers with dicey credit histories being given loans they can't afford.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


New Car Sales Warming Up in December

Comstock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- Along with retailers who make 10 to 15 percent of their holiday sales the week after Christmas, car dealers are likely to have one of their busiest weeks too.

Alec Gutierrez, senior market analyst with Kelley Blue Book, said December sales tend to be either the strongest or close to the strongest for car dealers for two reasons.

Many consumers are awaiting for better deals on 2012 models, some of which began selling in September, while others are waiting  for 2011 models to drop in price.  Meanwhile, dealers and manufacturers are not only trying to meet their monthly goals but also trying to sell their cars from 2011 to make room for the new models.

“So if they’re running short of their goals, they will add additional incentives to sell their products,” such as increased cash incentives or cash rebates with attractive financing," Gutierrez said.  "Dealers will try to get a better price and negotiate with manufacturers for new cars also.”

Car deals in December of 2011 differ from those last year because supplies are slightly tighter in part because of supply disruption after Japan’s earthquake and tsunami. “There isn’t necessarily a limited capacity, but manufacturers and dealers do not have the excess numbers that they’ve had to unload in previous years,” Gutierrez said.

While Gutierrez said he has not seen as many cash incentives and rebates this year, especially for Japanese cars, he said financing -- often at zero percent -- is widely available and will continue to be offered through 2013.

Car sales will likely exceed 1.2 million units this month, putting December on pace to be the strongest month of the year, according to Gutierrez.  December was the strongest month last year as well.  In 2010, sales in December totaled 1.15 million units, he said.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Hot New Car Trends for 2011

Photo Courtesy - Chevrolet [dot] com(NEW YORK) -- The end of summer marks the beginning of new car season for the automobile industry and the 2011 offerings reflect a clear trend toward smaller and more fuel-efficient rides.  Carmakers hope they are also somehow cooler than their predecessors. 

Consider General Motors' new Volt, or what calls "perhaps the most hyped car" in history.  The plug-in hybrid rolls out in November with a backup engine to recharge the battery, something its designers hope will ease "range anxiety."  That's the fear your nifty new emission-standards-meeting wheels won't have the juice to get you where you want to go. 

Ford has revamped its Focus for next year and offers the new Fiesta, which is smaller than the Focus.  Chrysler dealers will begin selling something called the 500, which describes as bulb-shaped, and Scion has the teeny tiny IQ.  It's a two-seater expected to please the urban crowd bored with circling the block for a parking space big enough to fit that tired old mini-van. 

Some of the larger models also reflect similar concerns.  The redesigned Ford Explorer promises a 30 percent increase in gas mileage.

With the White House pushing to increase fuel efficiency standards in coming years, the downsizing and shaved edges may just be the shape of automotive things to come. 

Copyright 2010 ABC News Radio

ABC News Radio