Significant Drop in Auto Sales over the Pandemic Period
The COVID pandemic has not left any sector unaffected. The automobile industry is one such sector that is slowly making its way back after a massive dip in sales post-February. A comparison of auto sales in the second quarter of 2019 with that of 2020 also reveals a significant drop in sales in most of the leading manufacturers in the country. Morgan Stanley, back in March had predicted auto sales to fall by 9 percent in the U.S. J.D. Power had reported that auto sales in the U.S. had declined by about 40 percent in the month of March.
The collapse revealed in the infographic is nothing short of historic. With an increase in stay-at-home orders, auto sales had almost come to a halt in the months of March and April. This disruption in auto sales has also forced manufacturers to figure out new ways to sell their vehicles. Most manufacturers seem to be going digital. While dealers have been using online strategies to expand their consumer base, they had not yet embraced the possibilities offered by online sales, until this period. Tesla is one manufacturer that had been selling cars online. Though manufacturers are trying to go digital with contact-less delivery of purchased vehicles, most consumers continue to prefer the traditional way of purchasing.
Post-April, with the ease in stay-at-home orders there has been some respite in the number of auto sales. Auto sales have increased considerably after April. But, manufacturers have seen a dip in new rental car orders. The manufacturing of automobiles had also slowed down with plants being shut down to avoid the spread of the virus.