A recent article from Curbed debated findings from The New York Times that New York City saw a surge in vehicle registrations, called the “Vroom Boom,” as more city dwellers saw an opportunity to have their own form of transportation. However, Curbed argued those figures may be greatly exaggerated, as the “Vroom Boom” wasn’t the big bang it was made out to be.
According to the Times article, there were 73,933 new and used vehicle registrations in New York City during the months of June and July this year. That is an 18% increase over the same two months in 2019, when 62,507 new cars were registered. But Curbed noted that, taking the entire New York metropolitan area into account (that would include the five boroughs and the surrounding suburban areas), the yearly gains in registration during June and July 2020 would only be 5% and 9%, respectively.
Using data from IHS Markit, Curbed also showed that the Times article did not take into account the significant drop in registrations during the coronavirus lockdown. According to IHS Markit, year-over-year registrations fell in March by 75%. That was followed by a 74% decrease in April and a decline of 49% in May.
There was one fact that both Curbed and the Times acknowledged: that the pandemic greatly affected auto sales. People could not leave their homes to go car shopping, dealerships had to close their doors and car manufacturers closed down their factories. Once the lockdown was lifted, people went out to find the car of their dreams while dealers made offers to buy older cars to pump up their inventories.
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