The U.S. auto industry’s growth streak that began in 2010 ended in 2017 as car and light truck sales fell 1.8% from 2016. Some manufacturers, however, took a bigger hit than others.
Cars aren’t selling nearly as well as they used to as more American consumers are opting for larger SUVs and crossovers — and some manufacturers failed to anticipate this shift. “Not all the manufacturers were prepared for that, so they ended up producing too many units,” Tim Fleming, an analyst at Kelley Blue Book, said in interview with 24/7 Wall St.
He said this caused the average days to turn, or the number of days a car sat on a dealer’s lot before being sold, to increase to 82 in 2017 compared with 75 in 2016. While some of the most in-demand vehicles may only last a few weeks, many vehicles will sit on dealership lots for months before they are sold.
Days to turn can be a useful metric in determining which car segments and models are going out of style. It specifically helps us learn how vehicles are performing against their manufacturers’ expectations. If a vehicles sits on the lot for six months, it likely means the manufacturer overestimated how popular it would be.
24/7 Wall St. reviewed data provided by Kelley Blue Book on average days to turn to determine the cars Americans don’t want to buy.