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Which vehicles were the hottest sellers in January amid 36.9% used car price increase?
  • The Kia Telluride is the fastest-selling new vehicle, taking an average 12.8 days to sell
  • Fastest-selling used vehicle is the Tesla Model Y
  • Used car prices up 36.9% compared to last year
  • Hyundai Ioniq 5 makes its debut on the fastest-selling new car list
  • Toyota-Lexus vehicles account for 8 vehicles on the fastest-selling new vehicle list
  • Alternative-fuel vehicles are well-represented on both fastest-selling new and used car lists

The latest analysis found the fastest-selling new car during the month of January was the Kia Telluride, while Toyota is the most-represented automaker on the list. The fastest-selling used car is the Tesla Model Y, topping a list that is led by alternative-fuel vehicles.

Analyzing over 280,000 new and used cars sold in January 2022, found that overall, the average new car takes 36.3 days to sell and the average used car takes 46.2 days to sell.

“The average one-to-five-year-old used car price in January was $34,852, which is an increase of over 36.9 percent compared to last year,” said iSeeCars Executive Analyst Karl Brauer. “Buyers who don’t want to pay inflated used car prices are turning to the new car market which is leading to further inventory constraints as the market struggles to keep up with pent-up demand from the ongoing microchip shortage.”

Fastest-Selling New Cars

iSeeCars identified the top 20 fastest-selling new cars, which sell 1.7 to 2.8 times faster than the average new vehicle and average 18.3 days on dealers’ lots. SUVs comprise the majority of the top 20 list, and hybrid vehicles account for six models.

The fastest-selling new car is the Kia Telluride, which averages 12.8 days on dealer lots. “Demand has exceeded supply for the Kia Telluride since its debut in 2020, and availability has become even more limited in the wake of the microchip shortage and as the vehicle continues to achieve critical acclaim,” said Brauer. “As a result, dealers consistently sell this vehicle for well-above MSRP.”

Seven Toyota vehicles and one from its Lexus luxury division make the list, with hybrid vehicles accounting for four models. The hybrid vehicles include the Toyota Sienna minivan, the Toyota Highlander Hybrid midsize SUV, the Toyota RAV4 Hybrid compact SUV, and the Toyota Venza midsize crossover. Toyota’s non-hybrid vehicles include the Toyota Corolla compact sedan, the Toyota RAV4 compact SUV, the Toyota Corolla Cross subcompact SUV, and the Lexus GX 460 midsize SUV. “Toyota had a 5.1 percent decrease in sales in January as a result of limited inventory due to the microchip shortage,” said Brauer. “Toyota’s hybrid vehicles have surged in popularity as a response to elevated gas prices, and Toyota’s longstanding popular non-hybrid vehicles, including the Toyota RAV4 and the Lexus GX 460, as well as the newly-released Corolla Cross, are in high demand with limited supply.”

Two additional luxury SUVs join the Lexus GX 460: the midsize Acura MDX and the compact BMW X4. “The Acura MDX took a one-year production hiatus and emerged in 2022 as a fully-redesigned model, so there was likely pent-up demand for this popular vehicle,” said Brauer. “The coupe-like BMW X4 is more expensive than BMW’s non-coupe compact-SUV counterpart, the X3, and is among one of the lowest-volume sellers in the class, which suggests that buyers are choosing the X4 due to the limited availability of more popular models.”

The Ford Maverick ranks fifth and is the only pickup truck to make the list. “The newly-released Ford Maverick is in such high demand that dealerships stopped taking retail orders, and the limited versions on dealer lots are commanding a premium over MSRP,” said Brauer. “The demand for the Maverick represents the public’s fervor for the newly created compact pickup truck segment.”

The Chevrolet Corvette is a mainstay on the fastest-selling list and ranks sixth. “Demand for the mid-engine Chevrolet Corvette has exceeded supply since its launch for the 2020 model year, creating a backlog of orders for the 2022 model and long waitlists for the high-performance Z06 version coming in 2023,” said Brauer. “Dealers consistently price the Corvette above MSRP, which has prompted General Motors to threaten to strip dealers of their allocations if they charge above MSRP for the 2023 model.”

Two Hondas make the list: the CR-V compact SUV and the Honda Civic compact sedan. “Honda’s January volume was reduced by 20 percent in the U.S compared to the previous year, which led to limited inventory, especially for popular models like the CR-V and Civic,” said Brauer. “

Two Subarus make the list, including the Crosstrek subcompact SUV and the Forester compact SUV. “Limited inventory of Subaru models led to an 8.7 percent reduction in sales in January compared to 2021,” said Brauer. “Both the Crosstrek and Forester were refreshed for 2022, and dealers have limited inventory of these popular models and are now charging above MSRP for the Crosstrek.”

Two brand new for 2022 alternative-fuel vehicles from Hyundai make the list, including the Hyundai Ioniq 5 and the Hyundai Tucson. “The highly-anticipated and critically-acclaimed Hyundai Ioniq 5 just entered dealerships and had an impressive first month of sales,” said Brauer. “The Hyundai Tucson Hybrid has been in high demand since its launch last year thanks to its value and as a result of high gas prices.”

The GMC Terrain compact crossover rounds out the list. “Production for the GMC Terrain was halted between June and November of 2021, which has led to a shortage of the vehicle on dealer lots,” said Brauer.

Fastest-Selling Used Vehicles

iSeeCars also analyzed the top 20 fastest-selling used vehicles. The average used car takes 46.2 days to sell, while the top 20 fastest-selling vehicles average 28.2 days and sell 1.5 to 1.9 times faster than the average used vehicle. The list of fastest-selling used vehicles is led by alternative-fuel vehicles, which includes nine hybrids and three fully-electric vehicles.

The fastest-selling used vehicle is the Tesla Model Y electric crossover, which takes on average 24.7 days to sell. “The highly-anticipated Tesla Model Y was the best-selling electric vehicle in America in 2021 after making its debut in 2020, and the lightly-used versions that are just entering the used car marketplace are in high demand,” said Brauer. A second Tesla, the Model 3 also makes the list. “A new version of the Model 3’s Standard Range Plus variant isn’t expected until June 2022, which further elevates the demand for used versions, some of which are being sold at higher prices than new versions,” added Brauer.

Nine hybrid vehicles make the list including the Toyota Prius Prime plug-in hybrid, the Honda Insight, the Toyota Prius, the Toyota Corolla Hybrid, the Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid, the Honda Accord Hybrid, the Toyota Venza, the Honda Clarity Plug-In Hybrid, and the Toyota Highlander Hybrid. “Many of these hybrids are new models that are just coming to the used car marketplace and are in short supply, including the Toyota Venza that debuted in 2021, the Toyota Corolla that debuted in 2020, and the Honda Insight that debuted in 2019,” said Brauer. “Just as in the new car marketplace, hybrid and plug-in vehicles are hot sellers as fuel prices have increased by 40 percent in January compared to last year.”

Three Ford vehicles that debuted in 2021 make the list including the Ford Mustang Mach-E, the Ford Bronco Sport, and the Ford Bronco. “The Mustang Mach-E, the Ford Bronco, and the Ford Bronco Sport have all been in high demand since their debut last year, and this demand has exceeded supply as inventory shortages have led to long waitlists for each vehicle,” said Brauer.

An additional new for 2021 vehicle also makes the list: the Chevrolet Trailblazer subcompact SUV. “Chevrolet Trailblazer has been in high demand since its debut and is one of GM’s best-selling crossovers,” said Brauer. “It’s average used car price is $31,125, while its top MSRP is $25,700, confirming that shoppers unwilling to wait for a new model will pay a premium for a used one.”

The Toyota GR Supra sports car makes the list to represent the sports car category. “The Toyota GR Supra was developed alongside the BMW Z4, and presents a relatively affordable and appealing option for drivers who want a luxury sports car,” said Brauer. “It also debuted in 2020, so used versions are still uncommon.”

Two luxury vehicles make the list: the Audi A3 small sedan and the Cadillac XTS large sedan. “The Audi A3 is the brand’s entry-level sedan and is among the most affordable vehicles in its class, so its relative affordability is likely a draw for luxury used car shoppers,” said Brauer. “With an average used car price of $30,004, the discontinued Cadillac XTS large luxury sedan is comparable in price to small luxury cars, so buyers who want something more spacious are targeting this vehicle.”

Two small vehicles round out the list: the Mitsubishi Outlander compact SUV and the Mazda MAZDA3 compact car. “At $23,525 for the Outlander and $25,192 for the MAZDA3, the average used car prices of both of these vehicles are well-below the average used car price of $30,799,” said Brauer. “These vehicles are popular with shoppers who want relatively affordable used cars amid the current used car price hikes.”

Fastest-Selling Cars By City

iSeeCars analyzed the data geographically to find the fastest-selling new cars in the top 50 most populous metro areas.

The fastest-selling new vehicle in most cities is the Hyundai Tucson in seven cities, and the fastest-selling used vehicle is a tie between the Honda Civic and the Mitsubishi Outlander in three.

“New car inventory is expected to remain tight for at least the beginning of 2022 as automakers struggle to meet pent-up demand, especially with popular vehicles,” said Brauer. “New and used car shoppers should act quickly if they see their desired vehicle for sale, and buyers will likely need to be flexible on color and trim options for in-demand models.”

Methodology analyzed over 280,000 new and used car sales (model years 2016-2020 for used cars) from January 2022. The number of days that each car was listed for sale on was aggregated at the model level, and the average days on market for each was mathematically modeled. Heavy-duty vehicles models not in production prior to the 2021 model year and low-volume models were excluded from further analysis.

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