Cox Automotive Forecast: New-Vehicle Sales Pace Remains Muted Despite Higher Inventory Levels

28 November 2023

November new-vehicle sales, when announced next week, are expected to show gains over last year's product-constrained market. According to the Cox Automotive forecast released today, sales volume is expected to rise 6.5% over November 2022 when the market was in the early stages of recovery from severe product shortages. The seasonally adjusted annual rate (SAAR), or sales pace, is expected to finish near 15.3 million in November, up 1.0 million over last year's pace but a slight decline from last month's 15.5 million level.

According to Charlie Chesbrough, senior economist at Cox Automotive: "A slight rise in sales volume is expected in November, but the sales pace will decline for the second straight month. October is normally one of the slowest sales months of the year, and the buying pace generally increases in November and December. This year, however, despite more discounting and more promotion, we are expecting the sales pace to slow slightly in a weak buying climate."

Sales Pace Continues to Reflect Improved New-Vehicle Inventory Levels
New-vehicle inventory volume was 2.40 million at the start of November, higher by more than 900,000 units from one year ago. Meanwhile, days' supply had climbed to 67, up from 60 at the start of October and higher by 41% compared to November 2022.

Chesbrough notes: "New-inventory volume continues to improve and is at the highest level since March 2021. Additional inventory is providing more options for buyers still in the market, particularly for larger trucks and SUVs. New-vehicle days' supply has been approaching 2020 levels this month, with the current days' supply above both 2021 and 2022 levels."

All percentages are based on raw volume, not daily selling rate. There were 25 selling days in November 2023, the same as October and November 2022.

About Cox Automotive
Cox Automotive is the world's largest automotive services and technology provider. Fueled by the largest breadth of first-party data fed by 2.3 billion online interactions a year, Cox Automotive tailors leading solutions for car shoppers, automakers, dealers, retailers, lenders and fleet owners. The company has 25,000+ employees on five continents and a family of trusted brands that includes Autotrader®, Dealertrack®, Kelley Blue Book®, Manheim®, NextGear Capital™ and vAuto®. Cox Automotive is a subsidiary of Cox Enterprises Inc., a privately-owned, Atlanta-based company with $22 billion in annual revenue. Visit or connect via @CoxAutomotive on Twitter, CoxAutoInc on Facebook or Cox-Automotive-Inc on LinkedIn.