Local Auto Dealers Struggle With Inventory Shortages Due To Pandemic Supply Chain Issues

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Supply bottlenecks caused by the pandemic continue to impact car sales in the United States. Although buying a new car is a competitive market, dealers say now is a good time to sell a used car.

David Idell, sales manager at Sunset Honda in San Luis Obispo, told KCBX News that a lack of computer chips is plaguing the auto industry, forcing factories to close and delaying auto shipments.

“Ultimately that led to, you know, maybe 20 cars available for sale right now,” Idell said. “And normally I have about 250 in stock.”

Idell said it was a problem for auto dealers nationwide.

He said that although stocks are low, the demand for purchasing a car is high, so buyers may notice that the prices of some new vehicles are on the rise.

“We don’t make a big markup on our entire inventory like a lot of other dealers do,” Idell said. “There are certain stocks on which we have mark-ups.”

Idell said that with the slow arrival of new cars, his dealership focused on buying used cars.

He said it’s a seller’s market right now.

“People who want to sell their vehicles now is the best time to do so because with the shortage of new car inventory, used car values ​​have increased dramatically,” Idell said. “It’s something I’ve never seen, and I’ve been in the automotive business for 18 years.

Idell said auto dealers expect to feel this domino effect caused by the pandemic for some time.

“I don’t have a crystal ball on this,” Idell said. “But I’ve heard that we can expect to feel something like this throughout 2023.”

Idell said there might not be a lot of new cars to put on those giant red arcs this season, so they’ll be putting them on their used cars this year instead.

“I have them! I have them in the middle of our break room, I have them in boxes,” Idell said. “We’ll get them in the showroom in a day or two.


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