A forecast from DesRosiers Automotive Consultants predicting that 2023 may be one of those rare years in which we see an increase in vehicle sales, while also experiencing a broader economic recession, is looking decidedly on track.
According to DAC, the last time that such an occurrence took place was in 1960. And now, with the release of weak GDP numbers last week, their forecast is looking more and more likely: August new light vehicle sales data from reporting OEMs came in at an estimated 149,697 units — up a noteworthy 18.3% from August 2022.
“Fuelled by improved vehicle availability and pent-up demand from the 1.1 million ‘lost sales’ that never happened in 2020-2022, the market in August performed strongly, making it now 10 months in a row that we have seen year-over-year market growth,” said Andrew King, Managing Partner of DAC, in a statement.
However, it is also worth noting that August 2022 was a “very weak comparable,” as it was the worst August since 1999. Still, DAC said the market strength this year was “impressive.” The [Seasonally Adjusted Annual Rate] (SAAR) for the month came in at 1.65 million units, which is the highest level DAC has seen since then. It is also considered to be a positive sign of market resilience, so far.
“It will be interesting to see if market momentum can be sustained in the coming months in light of high interest rates, weakening economic performance, and record high new vehicle prices,” said DAC.