How did COVID-19 affect car shopping?

By Kijiji Autos
Car shortage and car buying habit : how did it shift during the pandemic?

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As with many things, car shopping in Canada changed during the pandemic. Whether you've heard about the car chip shortage on the news, noticed how empty dealer lots are looking or been disappointed by long delays for a new vehicle, you might be wondering how we got here and how you can get your hands on a new or used car quickly.

Let's take a look at why there's a vehicle shortage in Canada, how consumer habits have changed and how you can avoid stress and delays when car shopping.

Delays, shortages and changing habits

As demand for cars dropped early in the pandemic, many car manufacturers slowed down production as well as cancelled orders for important parts like microchips. At the same time, global demand for electronics increased. With a limited number of microchip producers in the world, automakers now face serious competition for these integral parts.

The resulting global microchip shortage is the main source of the new car shortage in Canada, alongside other delays caused by COVID-19 outbreaks, natural disasters and political unrest.

The auto industry doesn't expect to return to full production until sometime in 2023, meaning that new cars are harder to find, some features may not be available and customers often face long delays when ordering a new vehicle.

The pandemic also changed the way many Canadians buy cars. As car shoppers and dealerships looked for safer ways to do business, online car shopping options increased. You can now find and finance a car online, and some dealerships even offer contactless options like virtual appraisals and home delivery.

Save time by car shopping online

Rather than traipsing from dealership to dealership, you get instant access to thousands of dealers at once. Use our handy filters to find the car of your dreams from the comfort of your home. Search for a specific model, browse by body type or limit your search to dealers in your area. From family-sized SUVs to compact hatchbacks, powerful pickups to eco-friendly electric cars, our huge inventory of new, used and dealer-certified vehicles makes it easier to accelerate your car search.

Consider a certified pre-owned vehicle

If you're having trouble finding a new car you want, it might be a good idea to consider a certified pre-owned vehicle. Offering you the benefits of a new vehicle at a more budget-friendly price point, certified pre-owned cars are well-maintained used cars that have been fully inspected and certified by a dealership. They often come with an extended warranty, helping to give you peace of mind. Not only are certified pre-owned vehicles available today, but they can also be a smart money move.

Due to the automobile industry's supply chain issues, used cars are now more valuable, meaning buying secondhand can be a good investment. Recents data from our Trend Report showed that the average price of a used car has increased 36% year over year due to supply issues, so a certified pre-owned car could be a great alternative.

Build your own financing deal

Our convenient yet secure system also offers trade-in estimates, giving you an instant approximate valuation of your current vehicle. Design a payment plan that you're comfortable with, then submit your car loan or lease application online. After approval, you'll only need to head to the dealership for a test drive and to sign any paperwork. It's fast, easy and convenient.

Start your car search today on Kijiji Autos. With thousands of listings updated daily, it's easy to find new, used or certified pre-owned cars available now in your neighbourhood and across Canada.

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