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Oct. 1, 2022

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U.S. auto sales drop 2% in first quarter

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DETROIT — Automobile sales in the U.S. fell 2 percent in the first quarter, another sign the nation’s economy is starting to slow.

Automakers sold just over 4 million vehicles from January through March, according to Ward’s Automotive Intelligence, and industry analysts blame the decline on rising vehicle prices, competition from an abundant supply of late-model used vehicles and relatively high interest rates. Weak sales of cars, harsh winter weather and the partial government shutdown also had an impact.

“We can now confidently say new vehicle sales are past their peak,” said Jeremy Acevedo, Edmunds.com’s manager of industry analysis.

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