NADA forecasts new vehicle sales of 16.7 million next year, down from a predicted 17.1 million this year. Chairman Mark Scarpelli announced the forecast live on CNBC’s “Squawk Box” and later reiterated that the forecast indicates a stable, healthy market for new vehicles.
“We are looking at a stable market where demand – particularly for light trucks, SUVs and crossovers – continues to be very healthy,” Scarpelli said. The light truck market share is expected to top 65 percent in 2018, added NADA senior economist Patrick Manzi.
Manzi said the overall economic outlook for 2018 remains strong with projected gross domestic product (GDP) growth at 2.6 percent, average jobs growth around 180,000 per month, and the price for regular-grade gasoline at $2.50 per gallon.
In some good news for dealers, retail sales are expected to increase to 15.3 million next year, up from 15.1 million in 2017.
Manzi said the influx of off-lease vehicles will likely put pressure on new-vehicle sales. “However, the mix of these late-model vehicles will favor light trucks more than past years and should be more in line with present consumer demand.”Download Bulletin PDF