We Work on Your Behalf
At Wheels, we are proactive and get you the information that you need when it comes to factory ordering. Navigating the supply chain is a top priority in supporting our clients. We continue to work on your behalf through engagement with OEMs regarding allocation and production, weekly delayed order reviews, weekly executive leadership meetings, increased staffing to acquire out of stocks, and by rapidly updating our systems with order status. If there is one very vital piece of advice that we can offer, it is to order early—get your orders into the pipeline. Reach out to your OEM rep and don’t take your allocations for granted. Being proactive will increase your success. Below, we have listed out what we deem to be the essential steps to prepare for MY2024 factory ordering:
- Don’t take your OEM allocation for granted – preference will be given to existing customers.
- Finalize your OEM incentive programs now.
- Collaborate with your Wheels rep to get your OEM info (especially Ford).
- When specs are available, work with your Wheels rep to prepare and place orders.
- ORDER EARLY – order cutoffs will remain volatile.
You can view our Ordering Updates by OEM chart to discover ordering status by manufacturer.
We are watching the potential for a UAW strike. The current agreement expires on September 14th, and the OEMs are keeping negotiation information close to the vest. The UAW members have until August 24th to vote to authorize striking. A potential UAW strike would not only impact the supply chain, but would additionally cost the US economy billions in economic losses. As always, we will provide updates when we see any impact to your fleet.
Meanwhile, there is a labor unrest movement gaining momentum in the US, with Hollywood writers and performers on strike, and recent resolutions of railroad, UPS, and port worker agreements. Looking forward, the UPS Teamsters agreement will potentially put pressure on FedEx as there is now an increased pay differential between the two workforces.
Vehicles with upfit could experience delays as upfit lead times have increased and production dates and lead times will continue to evolve throughout the year. For out-of-stock orders, expect high prices, low inventory and longer timeframes. To increase your OOS options, decide on “must have” vs. “can’t have” equipment and colors—don’t expect to purchase vehicles that are a perfect match. Once a vehicle is located for you, approve it quickly. A delay will lose the vehicle.
Unfortunately, vehicle delivery delays continue. This is due to industry logistics that are severely constrained, making it difficult for any OEM or supplier to provide concrete delivery dates.
Here are some of our observations we would like to share with you based on our experience, research and expertise:
- The long-term supply chain impact from Covid persists.
- Product is expected to be up 5-10% throughout the industry; expect allocation to continue from most OEMs.
- Retail sales are softening which could lead to more fleet allocation.
- Hybrid models are in limited supply due to battery supply constraints.
- There is a heavy demand for pickup trucks, work vans and hybrids causing OEMs to cut off orders early in some cases and extend order banks in others.
- There are higher prices and lower incentives across OEMs, and we expect a year over year price increase between 3-10%.
- OEMs are starting to increase supply to their rental partners.
- Dealer inventory is increasing for most OEMs and dealers continue to command MSRP or close to MSRP prices.
- Used car prices are starting to dip slightly.
- Nationwide labor shortages especially in logistical areas continue to impact delivery of vehicles to drivers. Examples of congestion areas are KC (upfit) and Mexico railcar.
- Ford not expecting to build as many EVs as originally forecast.
- Tesla is opening its supercharger network to other providers.
- BMW, GM, Honda, Hyundai, Kia, Mercedes, and Stellantis plan to build an EV charging network.
Out of Stock (OOS) Purchases
Dealer inventory is improving but still at half of 2019 levels. Expect the longer timeframes for sourcing OOS units to continue. Vehicles with higher equipment specs have the most availability. Since dealers may be unwilling to sell their limited inventory to fleet customers, their pricing will often be over MSRP.
Persistent Delivery Delays
And as we’ve detailed in previous articles, logistical problems such as the tight labor market and railcar shortages continue to impact delivery of all vehicle types to drivers. The long-term impact from the pandemic is still being felt in our industry—the volume of delivered vehicles in dealers’ lots is steadily rising.