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Despite gains, caution recommended for auto industry

Posted on Wednesday, February 11, 2015 at 8:18:53 AM

The auto industry has made significant headway over the past year. According to a report from consulting firm PwC, U.S. light vehicles are predicted to have another year of sales gains in 2015, which would be the sixth in a row.

PwC estimated that roughly 16.8 million vehicles will be sold during that time, a figure that brings optimism to members of the industry. Even so, the report urges that consumers and businesses remain cautious, as there are potential pitfalls coming in the near future.

"From a growth standpoint, there are many positive economic signs to note, however as we dive deeper into the data there are warning signs of potential potholes ahead," explained Rick Hanna, PwC global automotive leader. "Industry leaders should remain prudent regarding inventory, investment and incentives."

PwC pointed to rising auto financing rates and a drop in residual vehicle value as two key reasons why the industry could be negatively impacted.

Even with the warning, there are plenty of deals out there for consumers. According to U.S. News and World Report, some of the best vehicles for the price include the Honda Fit, the Volkswagen Golf, the Honda CR-V and the Mazda Mazda5, among others. These all offer great values and a quality product.