Day: April 16, 2021

New or used, car prices climb as inventory dips this spring

Ty Wright | Bloomberg | Getty Images

It’s a challenging time to be a car buyer.

High consumer demand coupled with a manufacturing shortage of microchips — key parts needed for today’s autos to operate — have pinched new-car inventory at dealerships across the country. And with drivers seeking affordable options for hitting the open road, the used-car market isn’t offering much of a reprieve.

“It’s a seller’s market, not a buyer’s market,” said Kelsey Mays, senior consumer affairs editor for Cars.com. “And sellers don’t have that much to sell.”

The average price paid for a new car is about $40,000, according to Edmunds.com. For used cars, it’s roughly $23,000.

A year ago, when dealerships and manufacturing plans were shut down due to the pandemic, chipmakers pivoted to focusing on the consumer electronics industry — i.e., computers and gaming consoles — and are still scrambling to meet the renewed demand

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Mazda reveals its first electric vehicle: meet the Mazda MX-30

Mazda, the Japanese automaker known for delivering reliable gas cars but not taking many risks, on Wednesday introduced its first electric car geared for the North American market.

The company revealed the Mazda MX-30 electric crossover with plans to begin selling it at California dealerships in the fall.

Known for focusing largely on fuel efficiency improvements in its gas engines, Mazda’s pivot comes amid a rising tide of investments in electric vehicles across the automotive industry.

In recent months, General Motors, Volvo and Jaguar all announced plans to phase out gas cars in the coming years.

While Mazda made no such commitment on Wednesday, the arrival of the MX-30 shows how even value-oriented brands can’t ignore the winds of change.

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Mercedes-Benz reveals its first electric car: meet the Mercedes-Benz EQS

Mercedes-Benz is giving up the growl.

The German luxury automotive brand on Thursday debuted its first-ever electric sedan, the Mercedes-Benz EQS.

The company is describing the EQS as a sibling of the recently redesigned high-end S-class, which is typically considered the brand’s most luxurious ride. But the slightly shorter vehicle, which Mercedes has been teasing in advertisements, has its own electric architecture.

The EQS is expected to compete directly with electric cars like the Tesla Model S and Porsche Taycan. It will debut as a 2022 model and while a starting price hasn’t been announced, car-research site Edmunds recently estimated $110,000.

Missing the trademark engine roar associated with high-performance gas-powered models, the EQS will nonetheless deliver significant power, albeit with a quiet electric motor.

The first versions sold in the U.S. will be the EQS 450+ with 329 horsepower and the EQS 580 4MATIC with 516 horsepower, both

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