With the global financial crisis in full swing, Australian automotive sales are down across the board by around 22% this year. The decline has also impacted the second hand market with less sales being recorded there in the first few months of the year.
Manufacturers have also begun to cut back production and reduce allocation of vehicles to Australia with Honda topping the list with a 60% cut back in allocated vehicles against last years sales. A number of brands are also up for review with Saab, Hummer, and even Holden unsure of its future as problems persist with its parent company General Motors. The cuts in production and allocation has made it harder for individuals to gain discounts on their vehicle purchases with dealerships as they the dealers have attempt to achieve the same amount of profit from less vehicles.
The lack of stock has also resulted in longer wait times for customers with vehicles being slotted into reduced production runs and some vehicles running over four weeks behind schedule. However there are some rays of hope on the horizon, the impact of the government stimulus package has helped and the recent G-20 agreement to stabilise the financial sector should help to reduce borrowing costs and bring rates down allowing Australians to have a bit more disposable income and manufacturers to have lower business costs. This should result in a significant improvement in economic performance around the world by the end of this year or the beginning of next year with global demand increasing.
In the meantime with the fate of some manufacturers still in limbo there are still likely to be some good deals out there for discerning buyers, particularly those who are utilising the power of purchasing as part of a group.