The global chip shortage has made getting new cars more difficult and, in turn, the used car market is shooting through the roof. While used cars getting more expensive makes perfect sense given the lack of new ones, what’s confusing is that old Saturns are rising in value faster than any other used car. Yes, you read that right, Saturn.
Why are old Saturns getting so expensive?
Saturn was GM’s answer to the growing car market out of Japan. After they shuttered the Saturn factory in 2010, most people washed their hands of the cheap American cars and never looked back. However, the lack of affordable inventory has driven many buyers back to the nearly forgotten world of Saturn.
Like most things, the seemingly insane uptick in Saturn prices can be traced back to a couple of market stressors that are driving consumers to consider cheaper options.
The semiconductor chip shortage is still wreaking havoc on the automotive world. All reports seem to indicate that this will likely continue for some time. As new car models continue to get delayed on the production lines, the used car market will continue to grow.
Seeing as how Saturns were cheap and fairly undesirable at the time, the used ones have only gotten cheaper and less desirable. Because of this, buyers are turning toward these cheap-os as little oases in the current car desert.
How much does a used Saturn cost?
According to Motor1, over the last 90 days, the value of used Saturns has gone up 26.07 percent. The next closest rise in value was for the Smart Car at 22.12 percent. Before anyone runs out to snatch up some Saturns as an investment, it should be said that this is simply a response to the car market exceeding what most people can afford. This is a failing of our economic system, not a hot investment tip.
People are buying used Saturns at a higher rate because they are available and cheap. As more people buy them, the prices will increase. This will ultimately drive the used car market further up as a whole, and the cycle continues.
Can the car market continue to get more expensive?
It doesn’t feel like the current market trends are sustainable. Like many other things in our economic system, we are quickly approaching yet another daily need that is getting out of reach for normal, working-class people. Like the housing market, cars are something that not only makes people’s daily lives more comfortable but also helps families and individuals more easily build wealth.
It’s tough to watch people who need reliable and affordable transportation have to resort to overpaying for a car from a defunct company. Supply and demand are clearly well at work here, but the landscape is looking bleak.
Similar to the “gas shortage” from a month ago with the hacked pipeline, needless buying and hoarding of goods are some of the most crippling things to an economy. This is in part why we see prices from objectively inferior car manufacturers going up at breath-taking rates. Hopefully, our chip shortage will lift sooner rather than later, and people can have a chance to buy an affordable vehicle again.