August 23, 2014 — The automotive retail industry should see a third consecutive year of record breaking throughput — the number of sales per dealership — in 2014 according to the mid-year Automotive Franchise Activity Report released by Urban Science last week.
Based on LMC Automotive’s forecast of 16.2 million new car sales by the end of 2014, the nation’s 17,903 dealerships should sell an average of approximately 904 vehicles each — up from 874 in 2013 — says the report.
LMC Automotive’s forecast includes both retail and fleet so the actual number of vehicles retailed is closer to 800 when removing the approximate 2 million fleet sales from the equation. Nevertheless, the average throughput is at record levels even when looking only at retail numbers.
Sales are at pre-recession levels while the number of overall dealership rooftops is down from nearly 21,500 in 2007, both factors driving the record average-per-dealership numbers.
According to Urban Science, the number of stores increased in the last year from 17,880 while the number of franchises jumped by 80 to 31,489.