Unlikely Problem for Volkswagen: Dealerships Don’t Have Enough Cars to Sell – TIME
Volkswagen may be battered in the stock market and court of public opinion, but they’re still selling cars. In fact, dealer inventory has been unable to keep up with the demand.
Buoyed by incentives that have made owning a Volkswagen far more affordable, overall demand for the brand hasn’t been hurt by the diesel emissions scandal—October sales for gasoline-powered cars were actually flat year-over-year. According to Autonews, all these incentives have brought down prices to compete with Honda, Ford, and Nissan, something the dealers have always wanted.
Unfortunately, this demand has led to dealerships all over the country having almost no supply.
“We had our best-ever October in terms of new VW sales, and just doing that with gas models and no TDIs in the mix left our shelves pretty thin going into November,” Marc White, vice president of Steve White VW-Audi in Greenville, S.C. told Autonews.
That dealer is by no means unique. On lots in the U.S., there’s only 48 days worth of cars to sell—around 52,596—and that’s 20 days less than what they went into November with last year (this figure includes the unsellable diesel cars). Since this is the time of year for even more year-end sales and promotions, low supply could create even for trouble for VW dealers with nothing left to sell.
Not everyone is seeing it as a crunch—some dealers are happy that cars are selling just as well with lower inventory. One dealer told Autonews that they’ve been selling more cars with half the inventory.