Key Auto Trends to Look Out for in 2021

Key Auto Trends to Look Out for in 2021

Weekly Wealth Staff
Apr 07, 2022

In 2019 alone, more than 17 million people shopped for a new car. The purchase of a car is one of the largest and most complex purchases most of us make. Researching what you want or need can be a fun but complicated challenge. After all, there are seemingly endless models, prices, features, and more. Before heading straight into your local dealership, doing some shopping online, researching car blogs, and searching for deals will surely help you score the best price.

With COVID-19 concerns, you might be wondering how it will affect the car shopping and buying industry. According to The Detroit Bureau, “signs point to a solid rebound in sales and production of new vehicles in 2021 and 2022.” (1) Looking more closely at car prices and trade-in values for 2021, there is expected to be a downturn in car pricing, meaning never-seen-before deals on new and used models will emerge.

Additionally, with significant growth in digital, new methods to uncover new cars and find deals in 2021 and 2022 are gaining popularity. But the trends auto expected in 2021 go far beyond this. Some of our favorites include:

Virtual Car Shopping

An increase in digital usage, evolutions in AI and virtual reality, and COVID-19-influenced shopping challenges, the race to bring the car shopping experience to consumers’ homes is in full swing. U.S. search interest for “dealership near me” dropped more than 20% in March 2020 versus February 2020.

While people still want to engage with vehicles as they would on a dealership lot, they just want that experience to be closer to home and more easily accessible. Some top-ranking alternatives to a dealership visit include: At-home test drives In-depth car review videos Digital showrooms Online tools to customize car selections VR text drives Video calls with car dealers (via the likes of Zoom, facetime, etc.)

Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, shoppers were looking to YouTube for digital test drives. While seemingly an added luxury prior to 2020, the importance of this tool has skyrocketed in recent months - acting as one of the primary car shopping mechanisms today.

3D Printed Car Parts

The automotive industry is always facing a demand for new vehicles and spare products, often relying on shipping car parts from around the world. This often causes a delay in car fixes and upgrades. The thirst for more innovative, better performing vehicles, as well as the need to streamline production, is peaking. 3D printing technology is being researched as a solution to help meet these challenges. It is being tested and explored across many areas of automotive production, prototyping, and producing tools and actual car parts. If widely implemented, this will drive down costs and accelerate car industry innovation at scale.

Unsold 2020 Inventory

Some car shoppers are searching for a reliable used car making it vital to know where and how to shop for the best used car deals. Purchasing a used car saves money for the buyer and provides lower interest rates in some cases. However, with the drastic downturn in car shopping during 2020, there is an excess of unsold new cars that dealerships are rushing to get off their lots.

With the need to make room for 2021 models, they are offering massive discounts and incentives for car shoppers. So if you are considering a new car, right now is a great time to be shopping.

More Certified Pre-Owned Cars

A certified pre-owned car is a vehicle that has between 60,000 and 80,000 miles on its odometer and is less than 6 years old. These cars offer features such as a 10-year warranty and in some cases have a free report on the car’s history. They are required to have rigorous inspections so that any mechanical problems and be given attention before the car is sold. These are great car options if you are looking, but don’t want to get a new car right off the lot.

Certified pre-owned cars typically come at a low cost and with such great deals being offered on new cars, used cars are being sold at a higher rate than before.

Explore Used Car Deals via Digital

While heading to a used car lot was once the best way to score a deal on a used car, digital is winning in that game in 2021. Some of the best sites outs there include Autotrader, True Car, Carvana, and CarGurus, each providing access to tons of car models at great prices. To get the best deal you want to be ready and do lots of upfront research on the car you want. Do comparison shopping from one used car dealer to the others and see what the differences are in pricing, down payments, interest rates and warranties.

For example, Autotrader lists thousands of used car vehicles in all makes and models. Each car provides detailed information on the car, including price, mileage, features, specifications, number of owners, accident reports, recall details, if any, along with detailed remarks from the seller. That sounds like a great place to start!

So while car shopping is often a high-pressure experience, 2021 is sure to prove itself as one of the best years to buy. With rapidly-evolving technologies, an influx of top-rated cars, and the lowest prices we’ve seen in decades, now is your chance to join in on the benefits of this changing market.

Just remember it is up to you to do your due diligence and be ready to get the best deal possible on your new or used car in 2021. Remember all the options and methods you have to reach that satisfied place by using your favorite internet search engine, social media, smartphone, and dealership searches that are all available to make your search a happy and fruitful one!


  1. The Detroit Bureau. looks-promising-in-2021/
  2. Auto Remarketing.

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