Incentives were up about 3% year-over-year to 5.5% of the average transaction price for the first time since August 2021. Those for luxury and electric vehicles were up 8%.  -  IMAGE: BMW

Incentives were up about 3% year-over-year to 5.5% of the average transaction price for the first time since August 2021. Those for luxury and electric vehicles were up 8%.

IMAGE: BMW

U.S. new-vehicle prices saw a bump in December but were down from a historical record a year earlier and fell year-over-year for the fourth month in a row, demonstrating the recent shift to a buyer’s market.

The average transaction price for the year-ending month was $48,759, up 1.3% month-over-month but down 2.4% year-over-year, Cox Automotive said.

It said the four straight months of declines set an unusual streak in an industry that usually experiences year-over-year price jumps. The adjustments represent retail sales returning to prepandemic normals.

“When we look at price strength, the pandemic created a seller’s market in which new vehicles were transacting above manufacturers’ suggested retail price in 2022,” said Cox Executive Analyst Michelle Krebs. “That market is all but gone now, as higher inventory has led to higher incentives and discounts – lower margins for dealers – and vehicles are now typically selling for under MSRP. The shift from a seller’s market to a buyer’s market is well underway.”

Discounts and incentives fueled the shift as they rose to 5.5% of the average transaction price for the first time since August 2021, up from about 3% a year earlier, Cox said. Incentives for luxury and electric vehicles were at 8%.

Eighteen of the 35 brands Cox analyzed had year-over-year price drops for their models, Tesla leading the way with a 25% decrease in December.

LEARN MORE: Used Values Continue Fall

Originally posted on Auto Dealer Today

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