WASHINGTON, D.C. – For some time now the automotive market in the United States has been relatively dominated by sales of sports utility vehicles (SUVs), but a new report indicates that passenger cars have not only recently held their ground in the first quarter of 2023, but have actually taken back some of the market share that larger vehicles have been wresting away from them in recent years.
“Cars” within the context of the report refers to sedans, coupes, convertibles, hatchbacks and sports cars, which are all typically significantly cheaper than SUVs.
While manufacturers have been scaling back production of some car models in favor of more in-demand SUVs, the first quarter of 2023 saw that cars represented 21.4 percent of the 3.6 million new vehicles sold in the country, which marks an increase from their low point of 19.7 percent in the fourth quarter of 2021.
While not a massive bump in terms of sales, experts still find these figures to be significant due to the fact that the sales of cars have been steadily declining since 2002, initially being overtaken by light trucks and then eventually SUVs. But the real question is, are we seeing the beginning of a new trend or a simple anomaly in the automotive field before the status quo returns?
Tyson Jominy, Vice President of Data and Analytics at J.D. Power, noted that the increased sales of cars in Q1 2023 could be attributed to several factors, not the least of which being affordability and overall inventory shortages across the board.
It seems like we’re approaching some kind of natural boundary, where SUVs [and crossovers] are about 60 percent of the market, and pickups and vans and trucks are about 20 percent, and cars are about 20 percent,” he said.
The main driving factor for this slight shift in the market is most likely due to the hardship being forced upon many Americans due to ongoing inflation and the looming threat of a recession, as cars are cheaper on average when compared to SUVs.
And, despite the fact that the industry is racing to embrace the adoption of electric vehicles, experts say that some people will always prefer gas-powered sedans no matter what; with many manufacturers pivoting to EVs en masse, some people are looking to get a new gas-powered car while the getting is still good.
Christopher Boyle is an investigative journalist, videographer, reporter and writer for SEARCHEN NETWORKS® and The Published Reporter® as well as other independent news and media organizations in the United States. Christopher works on a wide variety of topics and fields, has been featured in print and online in a variety of publications, from local to national, and helps keep a keen-eye on what’s happening in the automotive world for Auto Buyers Market.