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Most analysts predicted sales for the full year 2023 would be between 13 million and 14 million units, with 6.5 million for the first half. However, the actual numbers are going to be closer to 8 million vehicles sold in the U.S. in the first six months, with the second quarter outperforming the first quarter.

“We came into 2023 concerned about affordability, supply constraints, and a fragile economy,” noted Cox Automotive Chief Economist Jonathan Smoke. “But the jobs market has remained healthy, and consumers have found a way to buy new wheels.

“As we close the first half, the market is showing signs of being more balanced, with smaller, more predictable changes in sales and less news about big price changes. A year from now, we might look back at this point as the beginning of a return to normal.”