Car dealers banking more per deal


Auto / Buying a CarIf you need further evidence that the automobile dealers are in the middle of a resurgence, the scorekeepers at TrueCar have some—they are pulling in more cash each time they gets a consumer to sign on the dotted line. Value is up month over month and is doing even better year over year.

For the industry, the March 2013 average sales price is $31,087, up $129 or 0.4% over February 2013, and its up $339 or 1.1% over March 2012.

Chrysler stands out as bucking the trend and is hot right now. It is only up 0.2% YOY, but has surged 4.5% when compared to its average February deal.

There are only two negative percentages out of the 18 included in the TrueCar study. Honda has seen the average deal diminish 0.6% and Nissan is down 1.4% YOY — but those two companies have also participated in the MOM gain.

“Manufacturers continue to benefit from consumers’ insatiable appetite for highly contented new vehicles, as shown by average transaction prices exceeding $31,000 in March,” said Jesse Toprak, senior analyst for TrueCar. “Coupled with flat incentives spending and higher volume, near-record transaction prices herald positive earnings news for the industry.”

The following makes are included with the main car companies included on the TrueCar list: Chrysler includes Dodge, Jeep, Ram and Fiat; Ford includes Lincoln; GM includes Buick, Cadillac, Chevrolet and GMC; Honda includes Acura; Nissan includes Infiniti; Toyota includes Lexus and Scion; and Volkswagen includes Audi.

Here is TrueCar’s dealer scorecard:

Make Mar 2013 Feb 2013 % chng Mar 2012 % chng
Chrysler 29,890 28,614 4.5 29,842 0.2
Ford 32,914 32,786 0.4 31,758 3.6
GM 33,088 32,977 0.3 33,289 -0.6
Honda 27,141 27,004 0.5 26,249 3.4
Hyundai/Kia 22,646 22,549 0.4 21,717 4.3
Nissan 27,914 27,749 0.6 28,322 -1.4
Toyota 28,892 28,618 1.0 27,396 5.5
Volkswagen 33,871 33,812 0.2 33,124 2.3
Industry 31,087 30,958 0.4 30,748 1.1
Source: TrueCar          

RBR-TVBR observation: The pitch is: Car dealers, you know you need to strike while the iron is hot – and you’re bringing in the extra cash to afford some extra spot placements and watch your vehicle sales mushroom.

Or, of course, you can cede the airwaves to the competition. The choice is yours.