The calendar did not work in favor of U.S. new-car salespeople in November 2020 as there were three fewer selling days than in a typical year. While many companies turned in severe declines in November 2020, others reported much more promising results. Buyers in the United States purchased 15.6 million new vehicles during the month, a drop of 1.19 million compared to November 2019.
Average Transaction Price Remains High: After setting a record high in October 2020, the average transaction price dipped slightly in November. According to Kelly Blue Book’s projections, purchasers paid an average of $39,259 for a new car during the month, which is the third-highest in history. Full-size truck buyers paid an average of $55,000 while SUV buyers paid an average of $67,000.
Buying Incentives Down
Compared to April 2020, the average incentive package is down 22%. When compared to November 2019, the incentive package is down an average of 8%. Experts warn that those who usually wait until after Thanksgiving to find great deals on new vehicles as dealers are anxious to clear out the current year’s models will not see the typical incentive packages. Interest rates near historical lows have helped offset some of the lack of incentive packages in buyers’ minds.
Typically, in November, the mix of the next year’s models compared to the current year’s models is about even. This year that is not the case as about 350,000 fewer 2020 vehicles are sitting on dealers’ lots than usual.
Toyota Sees Statistical Rises
While every car manufacturer saw a decline in sales during November 2020 compared to a year earlier, Toyota and Hyundai both sold more new cars during each workday than they did a month earlier. Toyota’s sales were down 1% for the month. Toyota’s sales of trucks rose 14.1% for the month while their SUV sales increased by 12.6%.
Hyundai Turns in Good Month
Hyundai’s sales fell by 9% for the month, but daily sales rose by 4%. Sales of Konas were up 43%, sales of Sonomas were up 39%, and sales of Palisades were up 22%.
Statistically, Mazda showed a daily sales increase during November of 0.1%. Sales of their leading models all posted declines year-over-year, except for the CX-30, which the company first introduced in November 2019. Sales of Mazda 3s were down 17.5% while sales of CX-5s were down 1.7% based on daily sales averages.
Ford Motor Company’s sales fell by 20.8%. The company had hoped for much better news as they introduced the first Ford Bronco Sports to United States car buyers. The company delivered 141,544 vehicles to customers during the month. Except for 55 vehicles, all those sales came from the Ford Mustang and Fusion. Ford is putting new emphasis on its trucks, utility vehicles and commercial vehicles. The company saw a decline of 27.2% in F-series trucks sold to customers, which they contribute to the fact that production was halted entirely from March to May.
Sales of Honda vehicles were off 23.4% for the month. Honda’s truck sales were down 21% while their car sales were down 26.9%.
Not All Car Brands Report
General Motors, Nissan, Fiat Chrysler, and most European brands do not report monthly sales volumes. At the end of the third quarter, sales for General Motors were down 5.7%, sales for Nissan were down 26.7%, and sales for Fiat Chrysler were up 7.9%.