The Rising Trend of Canceling Factory Orders: What It Means for Car Buyers

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Last updated May 1, 2023

If you’re in the market for a new car and considering a factory order, you may want to think twice before committing. A recent survey of nearly 3,000 car buyers shows that more buyers are canceling their factory orders, with over one-third of orders being canceled in recent months. Greedy dealers who force add-ons and last-minute price hikes are among the reasons why buyers are canceling, leaving many factory-ordered vehicles searching for a new buyer. Let’s take a look at this trend, and how it affects car prices for the rest of us.

Also: Factory Ordering a Car? These Are Wait Times We’re Seeing in 2023

Survey: Over One-Third of Factory Orders Canceled

We asked the CarEdge YouTube Community what happened to their factory-ordered vehicles in recent months. Here’s what 2,900 respondents had to say about their recent factory orders:

I took delivery = 22%

I canceled my order = 37%

I’m still waiting for my order to arrive = 30%

Other = 11%

That’s right, well over one-third of new car orders are being canceled in recent months. Those factory ordered vehicles are still manufactured, and now they need to find a new buyer. 

Among the respondents who selected the “other” option, these were some of the common themes shared:

  • Dealers insisted on forced add-ons even for factory-orders, so the order was canceled.
  • Some dealers raised the price upon delivery, after months of waiting.
  • A better deal was found on the lot.
  • The hassle of negotiating an order with the dealer drove some to buy used for less.
  • And our favorite response, “In 1977,  I ordered a white Pontiac Firebird with red interior. I’m still waiting for delivery.” Love it.

The car market is still out of whack, and car buyers haven’t forgotten the normalcy of pre-pandemic car buying. “I canceled my factory order because I figured being debt free and driving a clunker bunker that is safe and still runs a much better option in this market.”

Clearly, when automakers take too long to deliver on a promise, the excitement that typically comes along with purchasing a shiny new vehicle often dies. “After waiting almost 2 years for my Bronco, the love affair kind of died. Decided to use the money on a new house.” We don’t blame you!

More Room for Negotiation: Higher Availability on Dealership Lots

ford f-150 prices are negotiable in 2023
See negotiability score, market says supply, suggested offer and more with CarEdge Data.

The high rate of factory order cancellations means there are more cars available on dealership lots, which gives car buyers who are willing to forgo a factory order more room for negotiation. Dealerships will be eager to sell these vehicles. They may be more willing to negotiate on price and add-ons, especially if the cars have been on the lot for an extended period of time. This situation puts car buyers in a better position to secure a good deal, as long as they do their research and are prepare to negotiate.

Negotiate Like a PRO With This Cheat Sheet Made By a Former Dealer

The Importance of Transparency, Fair Pricing, and Timely Delivery

In conclusion, the new car market is facing a new wave of disruption as thousands of canceled factory-ordered vehicles flood dealership lots nationwide. As more and more car buyers opt for factory orders, dealerships and manufacturers must ensure transparency, fair pricing, and timely delivery to avoid losing customers. With the evolving market conditions, it is crucial to keep up with consumer expectations and deliver quality service to maintain a loyal customer base.

If you’re in the market for a new car, make sure to do your research and leverage the current state of the market to negotiate better deals. Be aware of current factory order wait times. For additional insights on car buying like negotiability data, suggested offer, and local market availability, check out CarEdge Data. We’re here to help car buyers stay in the driver’s seat of their deal. Car buying, the way it should have always been.

1 Comment

  1. Eric

    My wife and I ordered a Kia Telluride in February 2021 and was told the maximum timeline was 16 weeks. We finally took delivery 44 weeks later on a different car than we had ordered. It was a terrible experience! We had to change salesmen twice, there was virtually no communication, The model year updated to 2023 which we expected and our selections didn’t directly carry over so rather than give us a call and ask they just guessed at what we wanted and resubmitted the order. Even at that the ordered hadn’t come in and we were on the verge of canceling our order before magically there was one available that wasn’t quite right but close enough.


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