COVID-19 (or coronavirus, as it was once more commonly known) has changed the way so many of us live in just a matter of months. But now that national lockdowns are most likely behind us and most dealerships are back to a new sort of normal, we thought it was time to take a step back and examine the fundamental changes that COVID has had on the automotive market.
So, whether you’re looking for Nissan Dealers in Northern Ireland or second-hand showrooms in London, if you’re in the market for a new motor, you might want to spend a few minutes digesting this information.
Parts shortages – The car industry is a global one that relies on global shipping and supply and demand. As a result, the negative impact that the pandemic has had on global shipping means that the car manufacturing industry has fallen behind spectacularly in recent months. This is particularly true for cars that rely on semiconductor chipsets.
Sales decline – With nobody allowed out of their homes for more than a quick jog for months and (almost) everybody working from home, there was always going to be a sales decline. What it has also meant, however, is that more second-hand vehicles are hitting the market, as those who are now working from home and no longer need to commute every day are selling off their superfluous vehicles.
The new normal – At dealerships, there has been a massive change to the way customers are greeted and taken through the process. For starters, everybody must wear a face covering at all times and much respect social distancing guidelines. Hand sanitiser stations should be stationed at the entrance and protective screens must be placed behind all desks. Test drives with dealership staff are also not recommended for obvious reasons and showrooms must be cleaned regularly.
Long term, there’s no way of knowing exactly what kind of effect the pandemic will have on the automotive sector but, as is true for all sectors, it’s going to need to adapt. There is going to be a major urge in popularity when it comes to online car shopping but as a new car is such a big purchase it’s unlikely that traditional dealerships will disappear entirely.
It’s a bold new world we’re all going to have to negotiate together but as long as there are people with jobs to go to, places to visit and lives to live, there is going to be a car market.