New light vehicle sales estimates for March developed by Desrosiers Automotive Consultant showed a 48% decline in sales for the month.
The decline in April will be of a significantly greater magnitude. However, it is not only in new vehicle sales where the auto sector will be hit by the economic impacts of COVID-19.
One factor that affects all segments of the industry is the usage of vehicles – kilometres driven. With millions staying at home as a result of closures and “social distancing”, kilometres driven has dropped significantly, and in the process will lower demand across the auto sector as a whole.
The scale of what is at stake is highlighted in the 2019 retail sales data that recently analysed Desrosiers Automotive Consultant.
A few figures
In 2019 retail sales in the auto sector topped $230 billion. Leading the sector, retail sales among new car dealers increased 2.3%, reaching $132.0 billion with most months throughout the year noting increases.
This 2019 figure for new car dealers represents a record high. Growing even faster, retail sales at used car dealers increased 6.9%, rising to $12.34 billion dollars. Retail sales at automotive parts, accessories, and tire stores increased in 2019 as well, rising 2.2% to $10.37 billion.
In the coming weeks, DAC will be updating these forecasts for the various sectors of the auto industry and will be keeping you informed.