LIMA — New car sales in Allen County were down 13 percent in October, but local automakers were still seeing a noticeable improvement in vehicle purchases through the first 10 months of the year.
The number of new vehicles sold in the county was 471 for October, down from 542 in September, according to the Allen County Title Department. However, it is up from October 2015 when 414 new cars were sold in the county.
“Sales normally do drop off some at the end of the year, with weather sometimes being a factor,” said Kris Thompson, manager of the Allen County Title Department. “But that also makes the four-wheel or all-wheel drive vehicles very popular.”
Lower sales, coupled with the fact that automakers are making room for new inventory, could mean better deals for car buyers in the coming months.
“I feel the dealers are offering rebate incentives and low interest rates for this time of year,” Thompson said. “The incentives are good if you want to purchase now, but if you wait until the end of the year, they could be a little better when [auto dealers] are clearing their lot of the 2016 models and getting ready for the 2017 models.”
Thompson said car buyers may have a harder time finding the vehicle they want if they wait until the end of 2016, but prices will likely be the lowest they have been throughout the year.
Despite a more than 10 percent decrease in new vehicle sales from September to October, the first 10 months of the year remain strong for local auto dealers.
New vehicle sales have increased by more than 1,000 units for the first 10 months of 2016. From January to October, 10,827 new cars were sold in Allen County. That’s 1,019 more vehicles than last year, when 9,808 new cars were sold through the same time period.
The top-selling automaker in Allen County was Chevrolet, which sold 240 new and used vehicles in October.
Reach John Buh at 567-242-0456 or on Twitter @bush_lima.