Report: Hawaii’s vehicle market still down, but 2023 expected to be better

Your top local headlines for Friday, Nov. 4, 2022.
Published: Nov. 4, 2022 at 8:50 AM HST
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HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - Cars are a key economic indicator. A new report released Friday morning looks at the health of Hawaii’s vehicle market.

The new Hawaii Auto Outlook shows that the problems we’ve had all throughout the pandemic are still plaguing the market.

Supply chain issues are squeezing inventories, inflation is surging along with interest rates and consumer confidence is weak because they’re getting less bang for their buck.

All those factors caused the number of new vehicle registration in Hawaii to tumble by 14% from January through September.

The report also estimates that betwen 2020 and 2023, about 25,000 vehicle purchases were postponed. That represents 43% of sales in an average year.

Multiple car salespeople say they have customers waiting months — some nearly a year — to buy a car. But, they simply do not have any available vehicles to sell.

It’s hard to say when these issues will be resolved, but analysts believe next year will be better.

Experts say rising prices have not dampened the pent-up demand, which is great news for car dealers.

And for consumers, analysts believe car prices will go down once supply chain issues improve.

The report also showed Hawaii’s most popular make and models.

For top brand Toyota came out on top, and for model it’s the Tacoma.