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Car Incentives Expected to Drop in 2013

2012 was a great year for car dealers, but that could mean trouble for car buyers in 2013. According to Automotive News, about 14.5 million cars were sold in the US in 2012, a 13 percent increase over 2011. The car industry is currently basking in the glow of a great sales year, however analysts are predicting consumers will see less incentives in 2013.

Additionally, TrueCar says the median price for a vehicle was $31,228 last month, a 1.8 percent increase from December 2011 and a 1.3 percent increase over prices in November 2012.

TrueCar estimates the average incentive was $2,409 in December 2012, a 9 percent decrease compared to the same time in 2011.

All this means consumers looking for a great deal will need to be diligent about doing their homework. Below is a look at how both car prices and incentives in 2012 compared to 2011. As always, make sure to start with the RydeShopper when you're ready to negotiate your deal.

Car Prices Comparison: 2012 vs 2011

ManufacturerDec 2012 PriceNov 2012 PriceDec 2011 Price% Change Dec 2011 to Dec 2012% Change Nov 2012 to Dec 2012
Chrysler (Chrysler, Dodge, Jeep, Ram, Fiat)$30,011$29,796$29,3222.3%0.7%
Ford (Ford, Lincoln)$33,010$32,543$31,9123.4%1.4%
GM (Buick, Cadillac, Chevrolet, GMC)$33,219$32,891$33,241-0.1%1.0%
Honda (Acura, Honda)$27,062$26,897$26,0863.7%0.6%
Hyundai/Kia$22,547$22,342$21,4265.2%0.9%
Nissan (Nissan, Infiniti)$28,127$27,704$28,298-0.6%1.5%
Toyota (Lexus, Scion, Toyota)$28,576$28,396$27,3494.5%0.6%
Volkswagen (Audi, Volkswagen)$33,914$33,610$33,7810.4%0.9%
TOTAL INDUSTRY$31,228$30,832$30,6861.8%1.3%

Car Incentive Comparison: 2012 vs 2011

ManufacturerDec 2012 IncentivesNov 2012 IncentivesDec 2011 Incentives% Change Dec 2011 to Dec 2012% Change Nov 2012 to Dec 2012
Chrysler (Chrysler, Dodge, Jeep, Ram, Fiat)$3,206$3,043$3,248-1.3%5.4%
Ford (Ford, Lincoln)$2,633$2,526$2,926-10.0%4.2%
GM (Buick, Cadillac, Chevrolet, GMC)$2,952$2,921$3,118-5.3%1.1%
Honda (Acura, Honda)$1,845$1,871$2,336-21.0%-1.4%
Hyundai/Kia$1,573$1,359$1,25425.5%15.8%
Nissan (Nissan, Infiniti)$2,449$2,403$2,970-17.5%1.9%
Toyota (Lexus, Scion, Toyota)$1,756$1,632$1,904-7.8%7.6%
Volkswagen (Audi, Volkswagen)$2,391$2,264$2,518-5.1%5.6%
Industry$2,409$2,310$2,647-9.0%4.3%





3 Steps Every Car Buyer Needs to Take to Save Maximum Money

The key to getting the best deal is to gather price or lease bids from as many local dealers as possible. Then shop that best price around until no one can beat it. Here are the steps:

Step 1 Get Prices From My Trusted Network

Select the vehicle you're interested in to see if there are local dealers in my network who will provide you with their best upfront price. You will get direct access to an internet sales manager who you can further negotiate with online (no need to visit dealership).
Select Vehicle to Get Local Pricing

Step 2 Get Prices From TrueCar / CarsDirect

TrueCar, and CarsDirect are my top 2 online price quote recommendations. These services show you pre-negotiated prices from dealers closest to you - and the deals are usually pretty decent. But remember, you can still negotiate further.

Step 3 Complete my Checklist

Follow this up with my checklist to make sure you squeeze out every last bit of savings.
- Gregg Fidan

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About The Author

Gregg Fidan Gregg Fidan is the founder of RealCarTips. After being ripped off on his first car purchase, he devoted several years to figuring out the best ways to avoid scams and negotiate the best car deals. He has written hundreds of articles on the subject of car buying and taught thousands of car shoppers how to get the best deals.

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