Car Buyers Find Cold December Hot Month for Deals

Winter's First Month is a Great Time to Buy a Vehicle, Says

IRVINE, Calif.

For most Americans December is "the shopping month," but one thing that many consumers don't shop for during the gift-giving season is a new vehicle. While that fact does not make car retailers very happy, it can represent a large opportunity for consumers to get an excellent deal on a new vehicle, according to Kelley Blue Book's, the trusted resource for new- and used-vehicle information.

"Several factors combine in December to make it one of the best months to get a great car deal," said Jack R. Nerad, Kelley Blue Book's editorial director, executive market analyst and author of The Complete Idiot's Guide to Buying or Leasing a Car. "A time when business is slow is a good time to drive a hard bargain."

According to Nerad, the following factors make December an especially advantageous time to buy a car:

  - Most dealerships and their salespeople have end-of-month and end-of-year
    goals and quotas to meet

  - Annual dealership sales volume helps to determine what and how much
    inventory each dealer receives in the coming year from their franchise
    manufacturer, so dealers are gunning to reach higher volume targets

  - Dealers and manufacturers are looking for bragging rights based off
    sales; advertising claims like "highest-volume dealer in the county" and
    "best-selling vehicle in the U.S." are worth extra effort to achieve

  - An "inventory tax" on all unsold inventory on January 1 gives dealers an
    added incentive to clear the showroom floors by December 31

  - Some 2005 models still remain on dealers' lots, and these are vehicles
    dealers often will discount sharply

  - With many consumers faced with cold, inclement weather, they often
    decide to put off new-car shopping in December, meaning dealers are
    eager for paying customers

  - Even in areas where bad weather is not a factor, many consumers often
    turn their attention to holiday shopping rather than car buying, again
    feeding dealers' hunger for sales

Nerad recommends that consumers do their homework online before heading to the dealership. The resources and advice available at no cost from sites like often can mean the difference of hundreds of dollars when it comes time to inking a vehicle acquisition.

"In addition to the vehicle's manufacturer's suggested retail price (MSRP) and dealer invoice price, Kelley Blue Book's offers the insight of its New Car Blue Book Values, which directly reflect what consumers are actually paying for vehicles at new-car dealers," Nerad said. "Having this information in your pocket when you visit the dealer could save you several hundred dollars or more when you make your deal."

If face-to-face haggling is not your thing, you also can request price quotes from local dealers simply by going online. Sites like allow car buyers to submit price quote requests to several dealers nearly effortlessly. Going this route, you can get dealers to compete for your business without ever leaving your house.

Armed with this information, wrapping up a new car in one of those giant red bows can be a reality this year. Check out, an inexpensive source for an individual bow to decorate that special holiday gift.

About Kelley Blue Book (

Kelley Blue Book's is America's most used and trusted vehicle pricing, values and information resource. The top-rated Web site provides the most up-to-date pricing and values for thousands of new and used vehicles, including the Blue Book® New Car Value, which reveals what people actually are paying for new cars. Since 1926, car buyers and sellers have relied upon Kelley Blue Book for authoritative and unbiased information to make well-informed automotive decisions. The company also reports vehicle prices and values via products and services, including the famous Blue Book® Official Guide and software products. Car buyers have rated No. 1 in overall customer satisfaction and experience, according to a survey by Keynote Systems. also has been named the No. 1 automotive information site by Nielsen//NetRatings and the most visited auto site by J.D. Power and Associates seven years in a row. No other medium reaches more in-market vehicle shoppers than; one in every three American car buyers complete their research on

SOURCE: Kelley Blue Book

CONTACT: Robyn Eckard, +1-949-268-3049,, or Joanna
McNally, +1-949-268-3079,, both of Kelley Blue Book

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