Tesla Inc (NASDAQ: TSLA) and Ford Motor Co (NYSE: F) will continue to face lower inventories for new vehicles due to the global chip and component shortages, Loup Ventures Managing Partner Gene Munster wrote in his latest note.
What Happened: U.S. customers waiting to buy new vehicles have been facing extended delivery lead times, stretching up to six months in some cases due to semiconductor shortages.
As per the research-driven venture capital firm, the average delivery time for Ford’s popular and U.S. best-selling pickup truck F-150 is about four to six months now, and for Tesla’s Model 3 and Model Y — the delivery time is between two to three months.
The average delivery time before the pandemic was about a month and a half, as per Loup Ventures, which contacted 50 U.S. car dealerships and polled salespeople on new car delivery times.
“Some companies are surviving on their current inventories while others such as Ford are stretched extremely thin. The most popular car in the US is the F-150, which we found almost impossible to find in stock,” Munster wrote in the note.
Ford CEO Jim Farley had earlier this month said the automaker is relying on tight inventory and plans to “run our inventories historically lower.”
Tesla CEO Elon Musk had last month attributed the price increase to supply chain pressures due to the semiconductor shortages.
Munster noted that despite the low inventories, automakers including Tesla, Ford, and Nio Inc. (NYSE: NIO) posted stark year-over-year surges in deliveries for the June quarter. The Loup analyst noted that this was primarily due to wide-reaching pandemic-related lockdowns imposed in the same quarter last year and the delivery numbers could have been higher if not for the chip crunch.
Price Action: Ford shares closed 2.99% higher at $14.48 on Friday and Tesla closed 0.63% higher at $656.95.
Benzinga’s Take: U.S. automakers are struggling with the lowest inventory in nearly twelve years but that may not be bad news as a combination of strong demand and a dearth of enough vehicles at dealerships is pushing new car prices and profits to record highs.