Used car buyers continue to shift toward online shopping

One in four people who bought a car in 2021 visited an online used car retailer like Carvana
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The number comes from the Cox Automotive Car Buyer Journey Study, which tracks consumer attitudes toward the car-buying process. (Cox Automotive is the parent company of Kelley Blue Book.)

In 2020, 17% of buyers visited one of the new online used car retailers. Five years ago, just 3% did.

Their growth reflects a shift in how Americans prefer to car shop.

Americans are happiest shopping virtually

Though car prices soared throughout 2021, astonishingly, the study found that most Americans who bought a new car were happy with their shopping experience. Why? Because they conducted most of it online.

The more they conducted their buying experience virtually, the happier buyers were.

The average buyer visited just two dealerships and spent less

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New-car buyers left waiting four-plus months

Looking to buy a new car in Australia but struggling to find one with a reasonable delivery wait time? You’re not alone, as pandemic-related delays have gripped the automotive industry for the better part of two years. But now we have a better idea of exactly how patient you must be.

According to data published by local car pricing advice website Price My Car, January 2022 was the first month since November 2020 that the average delivery wait time for a new car decreased over the prior month, with June 2020 the previous example.

That said, the average delivery wait time for a new car in January 2022 was still 126 days, just three days shorter than the prior month. Comparatively, at the start of the pandemic in January 2020, it stood at ‘just’ 36 days, meaning it has increased 3.5 times in two years.

Of course, the protracted

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They’re paying higher prices than ever, so why are car buyers so happy?

A wildly unexpected piece of news: Most people who bought a new car in 2021 are happy with the experience.

2021 was a miserable year to buy a car, according to thousands of headlines, many of which we’ve written. Prices soared to new records—the average new car sold for more than $47,000 in December. That average increased by more than $6,000 in just one year. Nationwide, dealerships faced low inventory due to a microchip shortage.

Yet, 66% of new car buyers described themselves as “highly satisfied with their shopping experience” in the 12th annual Cox Automotive Car Buyer Journey Study. Cox Automotive is the parent company of Kelley Blue Book.

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The number isn’t quite a record. The record came in 2020 when 72% of buyers called themselves highly

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Car buyers cancel bookings as auto companies delay Diwali deadline

Car buyers cancel bookings as auto companies delay Diwali deadline

© Swaraj Baggonkar
Car buyers cancel bookings as auto companies delay Diwali deadline

Car buyers have started to cancel bookings which they made in anticipation that they would be able to take deliveries during the festive days as manufacturers continue to struggle to align supplies with demand.

Automotive dealers have seen a spike in the number of booking cancellations in the run up to Diwali in the past few weeks. While booking cancellations are normal in the automotive retail business, the level of cancellations this year is unusually high, say dealers.

“Enquiry levels and demand is very strong for passenger vehicles but along with that cancellations are also increasing because we are not able to commit the delivery date. People wait for the auspicious occasion and when deliveries don’t happen on those dates, they tend to cancel rather than extend the period,” Vinkesh Gulati, President, Federation of Automobile Dealer Association

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