Dealers are still selling new cars for more than the sticker price

Photo (c) FG Trade - Getty Images

At least 10 models are selling for more than 20% above the MSRP

Most pandemic-era supply chain issues have been resolved and inventory levels have risen, but many new car dealers continue to sell cars and trucks for thousands of dollars above the manufacturer’s suggested retail price (MSRP).

A new report from found the average new car continues to be priced 8.8% above the sticker price. But that’s just the average. When iSeeCars identified the 10 models priced the most above MSRP, the gap surged to as much as 27%.

“There’s no denying it – new cars are expensive,” said Karl Brauer, executive analyst at iSeeCars. “The manufacturers keep raising their prices and then the dealers raise them again, to the point where the average new car is priced above $45,000.” 

Priciest models

If you are in the market for a new car, it may be helpful to know which models are, in some people’s minds, overpriced. According to the study, these are the cars that are priced the most above the sticker price:

  1. Genesis GV70   +27.5%
  2. Jeep Wrangler   +23.9%
  3. Mercedes-Benz GLB   +22.9%
  4. Porsche Taycan    +22.7%
  5. Jeep Wrangler Unlimited  +21.9%
  6. Cadillac CT4-V  +21.1%
  7. Genesis GV80  +21%
  8. Porsche Macan  +20.6%
  9. Cadillac CT5  +20.3%
  10. Lexus RH 350H  +20.3%

The news is not all bad for car shoppers. The study suggests the average sticker prices appear to have either peaked or plateaued in January, with prices dipping slightly last month.

At the same time, dealer markups above MSRP hit a high back in July and have been on the decline since. In July, sale prices were 10% above the sticker prices. Now, it’s 8.8%. So for consumers, the trend is moving in the right direction.

“The difference between dealer pricing and MSRP should continue to fall as the supply chain improves, though getting back to MSRP for most models may not happen this year," said Bauer.

Some models sell for less than MSRP

While many popular models are selling above the sticker price,  buyers are able to find new cars that are going for less than the MSRP. Brauer says the study identified at least four models where dealers are actually dealing.

“Chevrolet recently halted production of the Silverado, suggesting supply for this full-size truck is in the unique post-pandemic status of outstripping demand,” said Brauer. Other models priced right at MSRP include the Volkswagen Arteon, Cadillac Lyriq, and the Infiniti QX80.”

Brauer notes the Lyriq is a newly introduced electric SUV, so it’s surprising to see it priced right at MSRP. A popular full-size pickup, the GMC Sierra 1500, is selling just slightly above the sticker price.

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