Customers in the market for a new car should be prepared to pay over sticker price.
Research from iSeeCars.com shows the average new-car price in February was $45,296, compared with the average manufacturer’s suggested retail price, or MSRP, of $41,637.
A J.D. Power and LMC Automotive forecast estimates about 31% of new vehicles sold above MSRP in February. Though still a higher figure, it is down from a high of 48% in July.
On average, iSeeCars research shows new autos are priced 8.8% above MSRP. That figure is down from a high of 10.2% in mid-2022, it reported.
“The manufacturers keep raising their prices and then the dealers raise them again,” said Karl Brauer, executive analyst at iSeeCars.
Brauer predicts the difference between dealer pricing and MSRP will shrink as supply chains improve. Still, he says, “getting back to MSRP for most models may not happen this year.”
Luxury vehicles were more likely to sell over MSRP, reported iSeeCars. The Genesis GV70 averaged 27.3% over MSRP, selling for $56,476, compared to an MSRP of $44,299.
The Jeep Wrangler trailed close behind, selling at 23.9% over MSRP, fetching $44,396 versus an MSRP of $35,827.
Not all vehicles are selling at over MSRP. The Chevy Silverado averages $50,116, which is 1.9% below its $51,103 MSRP. The Chevy Malibu sells for $27,887, just 1.1% aove its MSRP of $27,597.
Higher interest rates also make financing a car more expensive. Statista puts the average interest rate on a new-car loan at 6.3% over 60 months. That figure is up from around 4% a year ago. Monthly payments now average around $722, according to the J.D. Power and LMC Automotive report. That’s $59 higher than a year ago.
Buyers that shop around and will consider more than one model may secure better prices, according to Brauer.