Things just keep looking up for the auto industry. Amidst news that gas prices are expected to drop in time for summer, which is a welcome development for drivers, automakers are basking in positivity as well. The latest report from TrueCar projected increased sales for the rest of 2015, indicating good things for the economy and many car manufacturers.
A bright outlook for the industry
According to the report, the estimated new vehicle sales for all of 2015 is now up to 17.1 million cars. That's a slight uptick from the previous forecast, which predicted 17 million units would be sold throughout the year. Much of this increase can be attributed to a strong first quarter of 2015. The report noted that sales of new cars and trucks reached the highest point since 2001, jumping 5.6 percent from the same time last year.
"This was an outstanding way to kick off the year," said Eric Lyman, vice president of industry insights for TrueCar. "As we move past harsh weather that lingered in much of the country through March, and with the outlook for the U.S. economy looking even more favorable for the remainder of 2015, TrueCar expects this to be an excellent period for the industry."
Numerous brands also posted record highs over the three-month period. Popular names such as Subaru, BMW, Hyundai, Kia and Nissan all had the best first sales quarter of the past 14 years, even with extreme weather impacting much of the country. General Motors received some good news as well. While the automaker didn't achieve a record high, it did come in as the best seller for March. GM moved nearly 250,000 vehicles in the month. It was buoyed by a 10.4 percent increase in truck sales, which helped to balance out a drop in the sale of light vehicles, according to Auto Talk.
So many new cars on the road means a lot of good things for drivers - even those who may not be behind the wheel of a brand new model. For starters, lots of recent creations come equipped with crash-prevention technologies. These features are designed to keep the driver and passengers safe, but they're advantageous to others on the road as well. Fewer accidents, especially those collisions that are avoided with tools like lane-departure sensors and the like, means less auto repair and frustration for innocent motorists.
Motorists who are ready to move on to a used car can also benefit from the influx of new models. Many of those drivers will trade-in or sell their older vehicles, putting more used cars on the market. A growing supply helps to keep prices low, leaving plenty of room in a budget for everything from regular car washes to radiator repair. You'll be able to drive a high-quality car loaded with modern features without busting a budget. The key is to stick to scheduled maintenance, which will ensure all parts of the vehicle are running as they should no matter what its age.