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New vehicles experience solid sales, rise in transaction prices

Posted on Wednesday, January 15, 2014 at 9:38:22 AM

Affordable auto financing, exciting vehicle options and many other factors have encouraged more people to shop for a new car over the past few months.

According to Kelley Blue Book, new-car transaction prices are on the rise, up $197 month-over-month in December. The estimated average transaction price also ticked up slightly, now at $32,890 for light vehicles. That is 0.6 percent higher than November, although 0.5 percent lower compared to the same time last year.

The biggest year-over-year gains in new-car transaction prices belonged to Acura and Honda, at 2.5 percent, and the Chrysler Group, at 2.4 percent. Several manufacturers actually experienced decreases, such as Ford and Nissan, with drops of 2.5 percent and 1.2 percent respectively. 

In addition, buyers with auto financing may have a wide range of energy-efficient options available soon. According to Navigant Research, the electric vehicle industry is expanding and many more companies are jumping into the mix.

"Since electric vehicles require less maintenance and replacement of parts, which currently provide considerable revenue to dealers and automakers, car companies are looking to diversify their revenue streams," said John Gartner, research director with Navigant Research. "One of the most promising avenues is partnering with utilities and energy aggregators to incorporate electric vehicles into demand response and other ancillary services."

These options could become more widespread as the new year progresses, which means more choices for consumers at the dealership.