The price of the average new car in America sat 6.1% higher at the end of September than it did one year before, partially due to inflation. But another factor is driving prices to new highs: Americans are choosing more expensive cars.
Luxury vehicles made up nearly 18% of new car sales in September. That’s almost 3% higher than two years ago and up more than 5% from a decade before. We’ve seen a higher percentage only twice — in December 2021 and June 2022.
American car shoppers’ tastes have changed, with SUVs making up a greater percentage of new car sales than ever before. Compact and midsize SUVs, combined with full-size pickups, make up nearly half of new vehicle sales.
See: Finally, new car inventory is up; what it means for car shoppers
But our taste for luxury cars is also growing. According to Kelley Blue Book’s parent company Cox Automotive, the average car payment was $738 in September.
Here’s how much luxury car sales have increased in the past decade:
% of New Car Sales from the Luxury Classes
This story originally ran on KBB.com.