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Ford New Vehicle Inventory Expanded In December, Beating Most Rivals

The semiconductor chip shortage has impacted the automotive world in a major way over the past year or so, forcing automakers to slash production, leaving inventory at some of its lowest levels in recent history, and sending average transaction prices skyrocketing. At the same time, Ford has been shifting to more of a build-to-order sales model, previously admitting that inventory levels may never return to their pre-pandemic highs. As a result, retail orders soared over the past few months, but it seems that new vehicle inventory levels are in fact improving, according to the latest data from Cox Automotive.

At the end of December, Ford had a 40 days’ supply of new vehicle inventory, which is more than the industry average of 35 and far higher than many of its rivals, including Nissan, Volkswagen, Mitsubishi, Subaru, Mazda, Honda, Kia, Chevrolet, and Toyota. Ford is still lagging behind some of the competition in this regard, however, including Ram, Chrysler, Jeep, and Dodge, to name a few.

As for the industry as a whole, new vehicle inventory surpassed the one million unit mark last month for the first time since August – reaching 1.098 million vehicles – while the average listing price came in at a whopping $45,505. That’s a big improvement over November when there were 935,100 new vehicles on dealer lots. Meanwhile, days’ supply improved from 25 in September to 35 last month, which is a five-day improvement from November. Regardless, new vehicle inventory is still a long way from its December 2020 levels, when there were 2.9 million units on dealer lots, representing a 68 days’ supply.

“Inventory levels have been improving modestly, and sales in December increased from November reflecting this supply improvement,” said Charlie Chesbrough, Cox Automotive senior economist. “The expectation is that this trend will continue throughout 2022 as many of the supply chain disruptions of 2021 begin to fade away. However, the rise of the Omicron variant has the potential to disrupt production capabilities yet again, so the risks to the vehicle market, and its available supply, remain elevated.”

We’ll have more insights like this to share soon, so be sure and subscribe to Ford Authority for non-stop Ford news coverage.

Brett's lost track of all the Fords he's owned over the years and how much he's spent modifying them, but his current money pits include an S550 Mustang and 13th gen F-150.

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Comments

  1. Greggt

    Maybe because so many dealers are jacking up their selling price over MSRP, it is slowing sales allowing inventory to build.

    Reply
  2. Bob

    Bought a new car ONCE, back in 1981.
    NEVER again.

    Many people are having their old jalopies repaired & not spending BIG BUCKS on new cars.
    This time of year is traditionally slow for car/truck sales.

    Reply
  3. Joe

    Many of the ones with the most inventory are brands that people don’t want like Fiat or very expensive lines like Jaguar.

    Reply
  4. Ed

    It would be nice if they could fix my F150 safety recall. Put 600 miles on my brand new truck and it’s been in the shop for a month due to parts availability. Also no loaner or rental.

    Reply
  5. NCEcoBoost

    Ford is not offering the kind of discounts that GM is. BUT, they are offering discounts higher than most. Which isn’t hard these days seeing that most want MSRP or higher.
    This whole chip shortage (and now they claim that Omicron will prolong it) is so contrived, it’s really hard to believe at this point since it’s been going on for WAY too long. Kids will surely read about it in their history “books” as a huge conspiracy of the 2020s.

    Reply
  6. Frank Prickett

    It seems to me that the car company that makes their own chips could dominate the market! Surely Ford could set up a factory to make chips here in the USA.

    Reply
  7. David Dickinson

    This graphic tells me FIAT has no chance of staying in business in the U.S.

    Time will tell if these reduced inventories will work. If competitors like Dodge/Jeep/RAM can keep product on the lot, the instant gratification of driving off the lot versus ordering online and getting something sooner or later seems like a competitive advantage for the Dodge, etc.. For someone who wants a vehicle built to very exacting specifications, the made to order scenario will likely work. But most buyers are willing to negotiate a great many features and will take the vehicle they can touch and feel.

    Reply

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