Car enthusiasts and potential buyers can breathe a sigh of relief as car dealerships, including major manufacturers like Ford, General Motors (GM), and Stellantis, will remain open during ongoing strikes. It’s important to note that car dealerships are independent franchises and are not owned by the companies whose logos adorn their buildings.
While not all automakers are currently facing strikes, it is likely that vehicle prices may increase in the future. Some automakers, such as Toyota, BMW, Hyundai, Nissan, Tesla, Volvo, and Subaru, are still producing vehicles in the United States and their workers are not unionized. However, dealerships for Japanese and South Korean automakers typically have fewer vehicle inventories compared to Michigan-based automakers. As a result, the limited availability of domestic automotive inventory may exert pricing pressure, while their competitors may struggle to meet the demand.
For those considering purchasing certain vehicles like the Ford Bronco, Jeep Wrangler, or GMC Canyon pickup, it is recommended to visit dealerships sooner rather than later, as inventories may become scarce in the coming weeks if strikes intensify. Although pickup truck inventories are well-stocked currently, extended strikes could lead to limited availability. Brand loyalty among truck buyers may also contribute to a wait-and-see approach rather than opting for alternative models like the Toyota Tundra or Nissan Frontier.
Being flexible in vehicle choices could prove beneficial as the strike persists. While dealerships may still have vehicles available for a few weeks, options will gradually diminish. This presents an opportunity to negotiate deals on remaining inventory, including vehicles that may be less popular (“ugly ducklings”) but still meet one’s needs.
Overall, car dealerships will continue to operate, allowing consumers to shop for cars even during strikes. However, it is advised to stay informed and act promptly to secure desired models before inventories are affected.
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