Friday, October 5, 2012

Hottest Segment For New Car Sales

Hottest Segment For New Car Sales, Low prices and improved quality have fueled a nearly 50 percent jump for one category. Small cars boom as Americans seek cheaper, yet better, new rides, Autumn started off with a bang for the white-belt set at the nation's auto dealers, as sales of new cars rose 13 percent in September from a year earlier. The noteworthy surprise: Booming demand for small cars, whose sales rose nearly 50 percent from a year ago and have become the fastest-growing slice of the industry. Not since the early 1980s have small cars been quite as popular among American drivers -- and here's the top three reasons why.

PRICES: According to TrueCar, the average new vehicle sold in September came with a transaction price of $30,282 -- a level that ranks among the highest ever, and has held steady for several months. Since emerging from the financial calamity of 2009, automakers, especially the Detroit Three, have been far more reticent to throw cash or cheap loans at customers just to get a sale; the average combination of rebates and other incentives of $2,645 per vehicle in September was down slightly from the month before

That said, deals still abound, and with rock-bottom costs for loans and the Federal Reserve's easing, automakers have been able to lure owners with less-than-sparkling credit back into showrooms with lower interest rates and deals stretching to six years or even more; in recent months, about a quarter of new-car loans go to buyers with subprime credit scores.


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