COLUMBIANA, Ohio (WKBN) – Auto sales in August were up 2.5% from August of last year, but they were three times better than April, when some auto dealers were shut down or working by appointment only.
Valley dealers are pleased with the way the car market has rebounded.
Chris Haus of Haus Auto Group in Canfield and Clay Campfield of Columbiana Chrysler, Dodge, Jeep & Ram both say that vehicle sales have been brisk ever since Ohio’s April COVID-19 shutdown was lifted.
“Now you’ve got in June and July people buying cars that they were trying to buy in March, April and May. So then your June and July were a little bit higher than normal,” Haus said.
“May 1, when we came back live, it has just been full speed ahead ever since and we’ve been setting records every month,” Campfield said.
Haus sells only used vehicles, some being specialty items like a Plymouth Prowler or a 2005 Dodge Ram SRT10. For a while, the used vehicle market was tight because there weren’t many used vehicles to be had.
“A lot of your new car dealers weren’t taking in any trades because they weren’t selling new cars because of less new car inventory or the lack of getting because a lot of the big companies were closed down,” Haus said.
Campfield attributed the used vehicle shortage to people having more money to spend because everything was shut down, so they decided to buy another vehicle.
“We started selling vehicles and not taking trades and then the used car inventory started to go down and used car values started to come up,” Campfield said.
Haus says the used vehicle market is gradually getting better.
“It’s coming around now to where prices are coming down a little bit,” Haus said.
The new car market was also stifled for a while when all the factories closed.
“We’re starting to get back to some kind of normalcy but we’re still short. Jeep Wranglers, very hot. Ram 1500s, extremely hot. But we’re starting to get back to some normalcy,” Campfield said.
Given what he knew in April, Campfield said sales are better than expected.
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