Dealers Hampered By Low Supply Issues for Vehicles Like GMC Terrain, Ford Fiesta

Automobile Staff
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Stop the presses: It turns out dealers across the country aren't selling as many vehicles because they don't receive enough units from the factory.

It sounds ridiculous, but in reality, supplies are extremely low for many dealers, whether because certain cars are hot or because automakers are trying to avoid the oversupply problems of just a year or two ago.

Consider that, in an Automotive News survey of 244 dealers, about three-quarters of the respondents said they didn't have enough new vehicles to sell. Of that portion, 77 percent thought they might have lost vehicle sales to potential customers not willing to wait until more stock arrives.

Perhaps this puts into better perspective Ford's decision to offer $50 gift cards to the 2300 2011 Fiesta buyers whose cars are arriving late.

General Motors says it takes just 13 days for a Terrain compact SUV to turn on a dealer lot, compared to 51 days for all vehicles.

As the Terrain and Chevrolet Equinox enter their second year on the market, they have been the subject of three production increases.

It's possible the popular Terrain could achieve higher sales if there was additional supply. Those who begin their shopping process with an online inventory search might forget a dealership visit altogether if they don't see a car with the right mix of colors and options.

Then there are some who think like dealer Tom Durant, who told Automotive News customers can easily select among 10 vehicles -- as long as those vehicles are a good mix.

What do you think: Are you overwhelmed when a dealer has 60 versions of the model you want or do you think the more selection the better?

Source: Automotive News (Subscription required), General Motors

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