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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