Buying a new Subaru? You may have a hard time finding one

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The chip shortage is hitting almost every sector of the automotive industry hard. Manufacturers predicted demand would decline during the pandemic. And instead, they have received an overabundance of demand from many people with disposable income. Subaru has been one of the hardest hit manufacturers. And if you’re looking to score a new Outback Wilderness or Forester Wilderness, you might be waiting awhile.

Automotive News reports that Subaru has an order book of 45,000 vehicles to fill, which represents about a month of sales. And that backlog is growing by about 10,000 vehicles every month. Subaru generally strives to have 45 days of inventory on dealer lots. Currently, they operate with about five days of inventory. Lack of inventory appears to be the reason Subaru is considering a second year of declining sales after 11 years of record sales.

Out of curiosity, I checked the inventory of my nearest Subaru dealership in the northern suburbs of Detroit. The dealership has 42 vehicles listed. But only one of them – a well-equipped Subaru Outback Wilderness oddly enough – appears to be on the ground as of this writing. The other 41 carry labels “this vehicle is in transit”.

According to Automotive News, Subaru expects the chip situation to improve in 2022 and hopes to be able to revert to a 30-day supply of vehicles. They expect annual sales to rebound to around 650,000 units from less than 600,000 this year, with exciting new cars on the way. But since everyone in the automotive world is fighting for the same supply of chips, there can be some hiccups along the way.

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