By Alexi Falson, 16 May, 2022
Car Shortages in Australia: Tips to Buy Your Car
April 15, 2021
If you’ve been in the market for a new car recently, there’s no doubt you’ve noticed just how difficult it can be to secure your dream car in a reasonable amount of time.
Over the past twelve months, the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic sent shockwaves through the automotive world, and more recently, microchip shortages have made these wait times even longer.
The laws of economics state that when demand is high and supply falls short, this, unfortunately drives up prices, and as we’ve seen in Australia, extremely long wait times for in-demand models.
Why is There a Car Shortage in Australia?
There’s two major reasons why certain cars currently have prohibitively long wait lists. First, and most obviously, the coronavirus pandemic. With a sharp decline in new car sales, all major manufacturers wound back the production rates of their cars, as well as being forced to halt production in a number of countries. A number of manufacturers were even caught off guard by how quickly new car demand was able to bounce back, and have been playing catch-up since.
More recently, a global shortage in the world’s semiconductor market has caused even more headaches for manufacturers, some of which might have to wind back production rates by 20% as they wait for new chips. While it might seem like a small detail, modern cars are filled with electronics that rely on semiconductors. A shortage in the world’s semiconductor market means that the job of catching up to demand is even more difficult, and by the look of it, impossible in the short term.
Now, with the why covered, let’s talk about how you can buy your car at a decent price, or at least without waiting months for delivery.
5 Tips For Buying Your New Car Without the Wait
1. Consider a Demonstration Model
One of the easiest ways to get into your dream car during a nation-wide shortage and without the need to wait is to jump into a demonstration model, instead. While this does mean that you’re purchasing a new car that might be slightly less than brand-new, demonstration models are often sold with just a few kilometers on the clock. What’s more, the dealer will almost certainly drop the price for your demonstration model over a unit that is being built or shipped to the dealership.
A demonstration model might not be as brand-new as what you’ve been hoping for, they represent perhaps the best, most affordable and fastest ways of securing your car during a shortage like the one we’re currently going through.
2. Be Willing to Deviate on Colours, Options and Features
Buying the car of your dreams without a six-month waiting list can also be made easier by either making sacrifices, or paying a premium for a model that you might not have had your eye on when you started your search. Typically, dealers are more than willing to sweeten the deal with some added extras. However, in today’s car-buying market, dealerships have the upper hand. That means that to secure your car without a six-month wait, you might need to purchase the higher-spec model, or save yourself some extra money by opting for the cheaper one with less equipment.
If you’re willing to pay a little extra, or you’re happy to drive away in a cheaper model, a few minor changes can make a huge difference when it comes to securing your car in today’s market conditions.
3. Look for Runout Specials and Plate Clearances
Getting into your car of choice in a reasonable amount of time can be made much easier if you keep a keen eye out for runout specials and plate clearance deals. These deals are when a car dealership is trying to get rid of as much of last year’s stock as they can before getting new vehicles delivered. Sadly in today’s environment, most of these new deliveries would already have buyers secured, but that doesn’t mean you can’t snag yourself a bargain by buying up last year’s model. In terms of the lifespan of a car, there are very few differences in any car on a year-to-year basis; usually, a manufacturer throws in some added equipment and potentially a splash of makeup to freshen up the looks.
Keeping a keen eye out for plate clearance deals and runout specials means you can get into your ideal car without the need to wait, and at a cut-price cost!
4. Compare Dealers & Shop Around
Another great way to get into your desired car is to compare dealers and do the legwork of shopping around to see if some dealers have stock that your local dealership might be missing. Quite often, metropolitan dealerships are the first to be cleared out while regional dealerships might have units sitting around for weeks, if not months. For car buyers that are willing to do the extra work and contact dealerships far and wide, the rewards are potentially huge.
If you’re pressed on time, though, there’s an even easier option to secure your dream car without waiting, and at a discount price.
With OnlineAuto’s access to bulk-buying power, we can help save you thousands and help secure your dream car in a relatively short amount of time. We’ll search nation-wide to find the exact car you’re looking for, and we’re even happy to do all the hard work in contacting the dealer and even organising a test drive for you at your home, or workplace.
5. Be Patient
We understand that purchasing a car is a hugely significant moment, and if you haven’t found what you’re looking for, or you’re being asked to make too many sacrifices to secure yours in a reasonable amount of time, just be patient and wait for stock to return to pre-pandemic levels.
Need help narrowing down your choices?
Get in touch with one of our Car Buying Specialists todayRequest a quote