WEST VIRGINIA (WOAY) – According to a recent study from an automotive research firm, iSeeCars.com, some cars may be slowly bouncing back after the ongoing microchip shortage.
The study says used car prices rose 16.9% nationally in May. This is a significant improvement from a 23.9% increase in April, marking the fourth consecutive month of used car price drops.
However, despite the improvement, the price increase continues to leave a significant impact. In the area alone, the study found that used car prices increased by 12.9%, or by $4,395 over the last year.
“It has affected even the used cars because when you don’t have as many new cars to sell you don’t get those trade-ins, so it drives the used car prices up,” General Manager at Beckley Auto Mall, Rick Lewis says. “This time three years ago here at Beckley Auto Mall we had about 350 new vehicles on the ground, we had them sitting everywhere, and now we’re probably down to about 25.”
In 2021, the semiconductor microchip shortage cost the automotive industry over $200 billion.
Car lots were practically empty. The industry found no single root cause of the problem, Covid-19 along with the worker and supply chain shortages only being contributing factors. While it still continues to be an issue, with an estimated 2.2 million fewer cars so far this year, the industry may be starting to look up.
“We are up as far as new car sales from last year here at Beckley Auto Mall, we are up probably about 40 or 50 units actually going into today,” says Lewis.
Lewis says that now is the perfect time to trade in your used car since the demand for them is so great. Although he says we can expect to still see fewer new cars on the lots.