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Unsold Cars Are Piling Up

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Even with U.S. car sales zooming along, there are some signs automakers might be stepping on the gas a little too hard.

Some 3.27 million new cars are now sitting on lots across the U.S., more than there have been in almost five years, according to Automotive News. That’s a lot of cars—just enough to equip every man, woman, and child in the state of Iowa with a new vehicle, and just slightly less than the number of iPhones added to Verizon’s network last quarter. A year ago at this time, by contrast, there were 2.7 million vehicles lying in wait across the country; summer 2011 saw an inventory of about 1 million fewer cars.

Inventory is a dirty word to most supply-chain managers. After all, it was a “just-in-time” factory system that helped Toyota (TM) muscle its way to the top of the industry, and there’s nothing timely about 3 million unsold cars. But there are a few, very real reasons for car executives to be confident. For one, interest rates are still relatively low and car loans are easy to come by, even for those with poor credit. There is pent-up demand because the 2008 recession spooked so many drivers into holding on to an aging ride for a little while longer.

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I always keep my car for at least 12 -15 years... I only buy a car when the old one "won't go any more"... I really don't need the "convienient monthly payments"...

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Well, this is good news, if it means that far eastern manufacturers of cheap, unsafe little tinny pieces of junk might perhaps have to cut back on the numbers of cheap, unsafe little tinny pieces of junk they churn out, and stop flooding the market in western countries with their cheap, unsafe little tinny pieces of junk.

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On the plus side, expect to see a lot of great deals as they attempt to get them off the lots!

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I always keep my car for at least 12 -15 years... I only buy a car when the old one "won't go any more"... I really don't need the "convienient monthly payments"...

I have a Hyundai Accent that I bought brand new, and afaik, it will be the last car I'll ever buy. I hope to drive it 'til I die (and then hopefully it will still be good enough to bequeath to my niece or nephew, since I don't have any children). I totally am with you on that, I really don't need the "convenient *snicker snicker* monthly payments". End of Rant.

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Wish I could wait like you guys. Cars are a vice for me. I'm going to try and hang on to the three I have as long as possible now. I think I'm over it with trading in and buying more. But I think I'm only only over it because the ones I want are soo expensive. I'd really love a new Camaro ZL1!

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I have a Hyundai Accent that I bought brand new, and afaik, it will be the last car I'll ever buy. I hope to drive it 'til I die (and then hopefully it will still be good enough to bequeath to my niece or nephew, since I don't have any children). I totally am with you on that, I really don't need the "convenient *snicker snicker* monthly payments". End of Rant.

I also have a Hyundai Accent that my wife and I use (I also have a Chevy Impala and an older Jeep Grand Cherokee for pulling a trailer. Bought a station wagon for $200 and turned it in for the cash for clunkers program. Got the Accent for $7000 with a 200,000 mile warranty on it. I've had no issues with it. Granted it is pretty basic - manual tranny, no power locks or windows. I'll be giving it to my almost 16 year old daught next year or so.

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Ha....they won't be selling those overstocks to me! I'm like Taun, I drive them till the wheels fall off.

I have a 1996 Honda Accord with 350,000 miles on it. It still runs and drives just fine, never gives me problems. I am going for it like this one guy I read about that got a million miles out of his Accord.

My other vehicle is a 2003 Honda Element which the wife drives. Some folks think they are ugly as a mud fence, but we love the thing.

I'm sorry folks but in my personal opinion...Honda is the best car made...period. Affordable and dependable. The US car makers shot themselves in the foot with the disposable cars with a 5 to 7 year life span back in the late 80's and 90's. They wanted to force people to "have" to buy a new car every few years and their trickery was their undoing. What happened to American quality, pride and craftsmanship? Oh...it was replaced with greed and laziness.

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Posted (edited)

I always keep my car for at least 12 -15 years... I only buy a car when the old one "won't go any more"... I really don't need the "convienient monthly payments"...

Couldn't agree with you more. :)

As much as I love cars and appreciate some of the classics they are just not accessible on my budget. Going further than what I can afford is out of the question so my car is strictly to get me from A-B when its raining or when cycling isn't an option.

I drive my car until it dies, then I get a new one.

I hold the same principles with women too. ;)

Edited by Junior Chubb
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I'm with you guys...I've got a '92 Isuzu Rodeo with 149,000 miles and it's in almost perfect condition. I've had to put very little money into it. I had it detailed last year and it looks almost brand new. I got a great price on it when it was only a year old....$3000 under blue book value.

I'm cheap and don't waste money on status symbols. I just want something to get me from here to there and haul everything I need to.

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maybe if the cars where more affordable.

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Posted (edited)

Owning unnecessary cars doesn't automatically equate to a status symbol. My unnecessary car is the car I wanted since I was in high school and it was only a few years ago I was finally able to afford it. So maybe I guess it is somewhat of a status symbol for myself but it was only ten grand so it isn't anything people would point to and say look at that jerk don't he know there's starving kids in Africa?

Edit: what I meant is that I didn't buy it for attention.

Edited by F3SS
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Owning unnecessary cars doesn't automatically equate to a status symbol. My unnecessary car is the car I wanted since I was in high school and it was only a few years ago I was finally able to afford it. So maybe I guess it is somewhat of a status symbol for myself but it was only ten grand so it isn't anything people would point to and say look at that jerk don't he know there's starving kids in Africa?

Honey, lol, I didn't mean anything about the status symbol as derogatory. There is a difference in what I think is important and what you, or my husband, may think is important. We all have our quirks...and most of us spend money on things other people would consider frivolous.

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Owning unnecessary cars doesn't automatically equate to a status symbol. My unnecessary car is the car I wanted since I was in high school and it was only a few years ago I was finally able to afford it. So maybe I guess it is somewhat of a status symbol for myself but it was only ten grand so it isn't anything people would point to and say look at that jerk don't he know there's starving kids in Africa?

Edit: what I meant is that I didn't buy it for attention.

Well c'mon man. What is the car? What car have you wanted since high school. Mine is a 76 Nova SS.

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Posted (edited)

Owning unnecessary cars doesn't automatically equate to a status symbol. My unnecessary car is the car I wanted since I was in high school and it was only a few years ago I was finally able to afford it. So maybe I guess it is somewhat of a status symbol for myself but it was only ten grand so it isn't anything people would point to and say look at that jerk don't he know there's starving kids in Africa?

Edit: what I meant is that I didn't buy it for attention.

Unfortunately once we are in our cars, we cease to be individuals and become Ford owners, BMW drivers etc to those who see us. This leads cars to become status symbols whether we choose them to be or not.

Glad you got your grail car though, it will always be a buzz to drive it. :)

And like Myles asks, what is it?

Edited by Junior Chubb

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Thanks Michelle. I just wanted to say I'm not a snob but my car is frivolous. Quite simply, I'm a guy who likes his toys but I'm sure tat goes without saying.

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Yes, I am definitely a part of a classic car war. It's a 2001 Camaro Z28. I love it but rarely drive it. Only 800 miles since last August.

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Posted (edited)

I'm bad then, just bought a new car in September with obscene payments. We share a vehicle and wanted something that would serve multiple needs.

For what it is worth, I plan on keeping her for a good long time.

Edited by Maureen_jacobs
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The worst part about obscene payments is when the thrill of it being a new car wears off and before you know it it's a devalued ride with 60 more obscene payments to go.

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Yes, I am definitely a part of a classic car war. It's a 2001 Camaro Z28. I love it but rarely drive it. Only 800 miles since last August.

I'm holding on to a "78 Z28 Camaro that I've had since I was seventeen but it is for sale now...very low mileage.

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I'm holding on to a "78 Z28 Camaro that I've had since I was seventeen but it is for sale now...very low mileage.

That's incredible. My dad had the same one. I can't believe you've held on to it. Is it still in good condition?

I'm a fan of all Camaros except the early 80's. They were pretty weak.

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That's incredible. My dad had the same one. I can't believe you've held on to it. Is it still in good condition?

I'm a fan of all Camaros except the early 80's. They were pretty weak.

I don't have time to get into it now, but we'll talk later.

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The worst part about obscene payments is when the thrill of it being a new car wears off and before you know it it's a devalued ride with 60 more obscene payments to go.

You know that's the real thing that the article completely ignores. Car prices are insane.

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They sure are.

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I have a 1995 Honda Civic [it was bought on the side of the road near my house] and it just works fine! If I don't get in a accident then I'm going to drive it into the ground. THEN I'll get a new car. I have already have one picked out. :D

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