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New Car Prices Hit Record High for Fifth Consecutive Month


New car prices are up 10% compared to the same period last year, marking the fifth month in a row of record-breaking numbers.

According to Cox Automotive data, the average transaction price for a new vehicle hit $43,355 in August 2021, a $685 bump over the prior month and the first time the figure has exceeded $43,000.

The average transaction price is calculated based on what consumers actually paid, below or above the Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price (MSRP). The figure represents the transaction price before any rebates, taxes, and registration fees.

This year, car prices have skyrocketed largely due to computer chip shortages that have made it impossible for automakers to keep production in line with demand. As a result, some popular models in especially short supply, such as the Toyota 4Runner and Chrysler Pacifica, are routinely advertised above their MSRP.

Additionally, traditional incentive spending such as manufacturer-to-consumer or manufacturer-to-dealer rebates has been trimmed back. Some automakers have resorted to different spiffs, like Chevrolet’s offer to include a credit good for vehicle accessories.

Shoppers looking for a rebate will need to check out Alfa Romeo, Buick, and Infiniti showrooms. According to Cox Automotive data, those three brands spend twice the industry average on spiffs to lure new-car shoppers. See cars for sale

Andrew Ganz
Andrew Ganz
Andrew Ganz is an author specializing in helping in-market consumers get the most bang for their buck -- and the best car, while they're at it. When not virtually shopping for new and used cars, Andrew can probably be found under the hood of a vintage classic that's rapidly losing fluids.

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