Car sales collapsed in the earlies months of the COVID-19 pandemic. People could not go to dealers. They could not shop, take children to school, go to work or have vacations. That slowly started to improve in the third quarter of last year. By the fourth quarter, car sales levels in the United States were close to normal for the period. By the first quarter of 2021, they were booming. Perhaps, one theory goes, it was because of pent-up demand.
One consequence of the demand is rising prices, which have reached record levels for both new and used cars. Many new car models are sold out, so people moved to the used market. Also, the availability of new cars has been hurt by a huge shortage of the semiconductors that run their electric systems.
iSeeCars has put together a list of car models that cost more used than new. The category problem did not exist in most years in the past. However, the short supply of some models has caused a dislocation in the market. iSeeCars Executive Analyst Karl Brauer makes the point that “Dealers may think that used car buyers are willing to pay more for the instant gratification of a lightly-used vehicle they can drive right off the lot rather than wait for a new one.” Thus, they raised used car prices on some models that may be barely available new.
To create the list, iSeeCars looked at more than 470,000 new and lightly used cars from the 2019 and 2020 model years listed for sale in June 2021. They came up with 16 used cars that fit the category.
Most of the cars that cost more used than new are sport utility vehicles, crossovers and pickups. These are already the most popular categories based on new car sales.
At the top of the list was the Kia Telluride with a used price of $47,730 and a new car price of $44,166. The Telluride is Kia’s midsized SUV. It is unusual in that it has three rows of seats. The Telluride has received extremely popular reviews from the media. Car and Driver rates it 10 out of 10, a rating that is almost unheard of.
These 16 cars cost more used than new:
|Vehicle||Used Car Price ($)||% Used More Than New|
|GMC Sierra 1500||57,671||6.4|
|Toyota RAV4 Hybrid||36,352||3.9|
|Tesla Model 3||45,677||2.9|