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CarGurus Vehicle Availability Index & Insights – November 2021

Posted by Kevin Roberts on December 1, 2021

Up until Thanksgiving, it looked like we’d be talking about another month of inventory growth in November. However, it appears that sales demand was high over the extended holiday weekend – before Thanksgiving, the new availability index went from up 4.6% compared to October, and after the holiday, it went down 4.9% to close out the month. Used saw a similar, but smaller, late-month shift, with inventory going from up 2.2% to down 1.4% over the holiday weekend.

Prices continued to accelerate in November, however, the rate of growth slowed for new, increasing only 0.6% to $46,806, but is still up over 25% from the same time last year. In a somewhat surprising turn, used vehicle prices continued to gain against an expected seasonal decline in demand. The average used listing price increased 2.2% from October to $30,733, up 34.3% compared to last year.

With more new vehicles coming to market and being snapped up quickly, we’ve seen some significant declines in days-on-market, which dropped 13.5% to just over 45 days in November and is now down 41.8% year-over-year. Used days-on-market rose 0.9% from October, which is to be expected with normal seasonal trends – however, year-over-year days-on-market is down 4.4%, showing that demand may be higher than seasonal trends would predict.

Outlook

The expectation had been that inventory would continue to improve through November before seeing a contraction due to stronger sales demand in December. However, that narrative looks to have been pulled ahead a week, highlighting that while new vehicle production has been picking up pace, we’re likely to see a recovery in sales volume before we see a significant increase in inventory. We’ll also continue to see this type of inventory turbulence through early- to mid-2022 until sales demand can move from 12-13m SAAR to a level of 16-18m.

To learn more about vehicle inventory trends, download the CarGurus Vehicle Availability Index & Insights November 2021  

Topics: inventory, new vehicles, used vehicles