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Auto dealers in the United States - facts & statistics

The motor vehicle and parts dealers’ industry in the United States was worth some 343.6 billion U.S. dollars in gross output in 2020, a volume which grew by over two billion U.S. dollars year-on-year, despite the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on vehicle manufacturing and demand. That same year, the U.S. auto industry recorded over 39 million sales of used light vehicles and approximately 14.5 million new light vehicle sales. A year later, in 2021, there were about 18,260 light vehicle dealership outlets supporting just under two million jobs across the country. In terms of dealership group revenue, CarMax was the leading U.S. company in the field of automotive retailing and services in 2020, followed closely by the Penske Automotive Group. CarMax comprises around 228 retail locations in the U.S. for some 19 billion U.S. dollars in revenue in 2021.

Rising demand for used vehicles

With a product range that is priced well below new vehicle prices, used vehicle sales are gaining momentum in the United States, accounting for almost 33 percent of dollar sales at franchised dealerships in 2020. The average American household spends some 4,500 U.S. dollars on vehicle purchases annually and used vehicle financing options are naturally more affordable than new vehicle financing options. While prices for used cars remain more affordable than new ones, the global chip shortage resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic has depleted used vehicle stocks. The average list price of used vehicles in the U.S. reached over 24,400 U.S dollars in June 2021, just under 4,800 dollars more than prices in June 2020. Supplies for the Toyota RAV4, best-selling sport utility vehicle in the first half of 2021, were projected to last under 18 days in as of June 2021, all sales remaining constant.

Customers begin to embrace online sales

Digitization of the car buying process is on the rise. Previously apprehensive customers seem to see fewer reasons not to purchase a vehicle online amid the coronavirus pandemic. Online car sales emerged as an opportunity for car intenders who were not comfortable purchasing a vehicle from a physical dealership within the first month after restrictions were lifted. Consumers widely preferred online car retail to find information on buying incentives and financing qualifications, but other activities such as acquiring the vehicle and test driving it have not fully made the leap to a home-delivery solution. As for franchise car dealers, the cost of digital retail is the main operational barriers to online car sales, though less than 35 percent of the franchise dealers surveyed identified it as a hurdle.

Interesting statistics

In the following 5 chapters, you will quickly find the 38 most important statistics relating to "Auto dealers in the United States".


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