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Japanese New Cars Trickle Into the USA

Updated on May 16, 2011

If you are thinking about buying a new Japanese car, you are in for a shock at many dealers, whether it is Nissan, Toyota, or Honda. You can thank Japan's massive 9.0 earthquake back in March for the shortage. It all depends on the specific model. The models in short supply are Toyota's Prius and Corollas. There is a large demand for Prius', even older models because of the price of gas, so they will be more expensive. At a major Toyota seller in Cerritos, CA, it generally sells 58 Corollas a month and receive ample replacements, so far, the dealership had received ONE Corolla. In Hollywood, Florida, a Honda dealership that usually sells 20 Odyssey's a month has received only FOUR replacements. In Tampa Bay, Florida, a dealer usually selling 24 Lexus RX350 per month, has only received ONE replacement.

One of the nation's largest dealeership, Autonation, with 211 dealerships in 15 states is feeling the pinch bigtime. So is the Houston based Group 1 Automotive that have received only half of their monthly allotment of cars. Most dealers, because of the shortage of cars, will increase the cost of the popular models by as much as $400 and will no longer wheel and deal just to sell it because inventory is in short supply for much of the summer months. Nissan's Juke, a small SUV, is only made in Japan and dealers beg for them. In Florida, five Nissan dealers have only 21 of them and they sell about 28 every month. Because of this shortage, the Juke's price increased by almost $1000. The Altima and Maximus are not is short supply and inventory is sufficient.

For many Japanese models, it is not a buyer's market, and you may even have to wait for what you  bought.

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