Top global automakers experienced a boost in new vehicle sales in the United States during the second quarter, thanks to improving supply and strong consumer demand. Despite rising interest rates, the impact on purchases has been minimal thus far.
The automotive industry faced significant challenges in vehicle production due to the pandemic’s disruption of semiconductor chip and raw material supply. This hindered automakers’ ability to meet the surging demand for personal transportation. However, as supply chain issues gradually ease, companies are working to compensate for the lost production.
According to Jonathan Smoke, Chief Economist at Cox Automotive, the job market remains robust, and consumers have managed to find ways to purchase new vehicles. Toyota Motor’s North America unit (TMNA) reported a 7.13% increase in U.S. sales, totaling 568,962 units for the quarter ending in June.
General Motors surpassed Toyota in the quarter, witnessing a nearly 19% rise in U.S. sales to a total of 691,978 units, including 15,652 electric vehicles (EV). In comparison to its competitors, Toyota has struggled to deliver sufficient vehicles on time to dealers.
David Christ, Group Vice President and General Manager at TMNA, stated in an interview with Reuters that the supply chain is improving, and they anticipate better production and wholesale to dealers in the second half of the year compared to the first half. He also mentioned that customers have absorbed the industry’s increase in transaction prices along with the rate hike.
Earlier in the week, FCA US, a unit of Stellantis and Korean peer Hyundai Motor’s U.S. unit reported a 6% and 14% increase, respectively in total auto sales.Electric vehicles continue to see higher demand on incentives under the Inflation Reduction Act and a price war sparked by market leader Tesla Inc, which delivered a record number of vehicles in the quarter.
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