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Which vehicles were the fastest sellers in October?

A 2021 KIA Seltos EX AWD on display at the 2020 Pittsburgh International Auto Show. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar)

  • The Kia Seltos is the fastest-selling new vehicle, taking an average 7.7 days to sell
  • Both new and used cars are selling more than a week slower than in September
  • Hyundai-Kia vehicles account for 5 vehicles on the fastest-selling new vehicle list
  • Honda Insight replaces Tesla Model 3 as the fastest-selling used car after four months; alternative-fuel vehicles are well-represented on both fastest-selling new and used car lists

The latest iSeeCars.com analysis found the fastest-selling new car during the month of October was the Kia Seltos, which tops the list for the first time and moves up from the eleventh position in September. The fastest-selling used car is the Honda Insight, topping a list that is led by alternative-fuel vehicles.

Analyzing over 250,000 new and used cars sold in October 2021, iSeeCars.com found that overall, the average new car takes 31.7 days to sell and the average used car takes 44.7 days to sell. Both new and used cars are selling slower than in September, where the average for new cars was 24.6 days and the average for used cars was 32.8 days.

“The demand for new and used cars has slowed in October, which is likely the result of increased inventory over September and because elevated car prices may have deterred consumers from buying a car until prices stabilize,” said iSeeCars Executive Analyst Karl Brauer. “Production halts and restricted inventory continue to beset the auto industry, but we did see an incremental improvement this past month.”

Fastest-Selling New Cars

iSeeCars identified the top 20 fastest-selling new cars, which sell 2 to 4.1 times faster than the average new vehicle and average 12 days on dealers’ lots. SUVs comprise the majority of the top 20 list, and hybrid vehicles account for six models.  

Top 20 Fastest-Selling New Vehicles In October 2021 – iSeeCars Study
RankVehicleAverage Days To Sell Average Price
1Kia Seltos7.7$27,284
2Toyota Highlander Hybrid7.9$47,287
3Honda CR-V9.0$31,772
4Toyota Sienna9.4$44,186
5Kia Telluride9.8$46,374
6Mercedes-Benz GLS9.9$92,577
7Honda CR-V Hybrid10.6$35,254
8Jeep Wrangler Unlimited10.8$60,980
9Toyota RAV4 Hybrid11.4$36,259
10Subaru Crosstrek11.5$29,495
11Mercedes-Benz GLE12.1$76,359
12Kia Carnival12.4$40,065
13Subaru Forester12.6$32,855
14Subaru Outback13.8$36,726
15Chevrolet Corvette13.9$96,118
16Honda Civic14.1$24,081
17Ford Maverick14.6$29,705
18Hyundai Tucson Plug-In Hybrid14.6$40,623
19Kia K514.8$29,245
20Toyota Tacoma14.9$37,985
Average For All New Vehicles31.7$40,720

The fastest-selling vehicle is the Kia Seltos subcompact SUV, which takes an average of 7.7 days to  sell. “Despite being consistently priced over MSRP, there is heightened demand for the relatively affordable subcompact Seltos as fervor for the Kia brand continues to grow,” said Brauer. “As a result of inventory constraints stemming from the microchip shortage, demand outpaced supply for Hyundai-Kia.”

Four additional models from Hyundai-Kia make the list to further illustrate the shift in public perception for the automotive group that was once viewed as budget-oriented brands. These vehicles include the Kia Telluride, the Kia Carnival, the Hyundai Tucson Plug-In Hybrid, and the Kia K5. “Demand for the often marked up Kia Telluride has outpaced supply since its 2019 launch, and its average new car price of $46,374 exceeds its MSRP of $32,190 to $44,590,” said Brauer. “The Hyundai Tucson Plug-In Hybrid just arrived in dealerships and ousted the Tucson traditional hybrid as a fast seller, and the Kia Carnival multi-purpose vehicle attracts consumers who want a functional family vehicle that isn’t a typical minivan. Moreover, sedans like the midsize K5 have enjoyed a resurgence in popularity due to their lower prices and increased availability compared to SUVs.” 

Four Toyota vehicles make the list, with hybrid vehicles accounting for three models. The hybrid vehicles include the Toyota Highlander Hybrid, the Toyota Sienna minivan, and the Toyota RAV4 Hybrid, while the Tacoma pickup represents Toyota’s non-hybrid vehicles. “The microchip shortage led to a 40 percent decrease in output for the automaker in October, which led to scarce inventory for its vehicles,” said Brauer. “Hybrid vehicles have surged in popularity and have grown in sales faster than electric vehicles, and consumers have embraced the hybrid versions of Toyota’s popular cars and SUVs, leading to their rapid sales rate.”

Three Hondas make the list including the CR-V compact SUV, the CR-V’s hybrid variant, and the Civic compact sedan. “Honda’s volume was reduced by 24 percent in the U.S, which led to limited inventory especially for popular models like the CR-V and the Civic,” said Brauer. “The Honda CR-V Hybrid makes its debut on the fastest-selling list and is likely seeing a sales boost due to elevated gas prices and because of the scarcity of the traditional CR-V and more popular hybrids.”

Three Subarus also make the list including the Crosstrek subcompact SUV, the Outback compact wagon, and the Forester compact SUV. “Subaru’s American sales fell 40 percent in October due to supply-chain shortages leading to scarce inventory levels for its most popular models, which include the Crosstrek, Outback, and Forester.”

The Jeep Wrangler Unlimited ranks eighth. “The Jeep Wrangler Unlimited is among the new cars with the greatest price hikes over MSRP, and car buyers are willing to pay a premium for the new versions that are difficult to find on new car lots,” said Brauer.

The Chevrolet Corvette is a mainstay on the fastest-selling list, but dropped 13 positions to become October’s fifteenth fastest-seller. “Demand for the mid-engine Chevrolet Corvette has exceeded supply since its launch for the 2020 model year,” said Brauer. “While demand remains high for the Corvette, it may have slightly slowed due to the regular dealer markups and the anticipation of the high-performance Z06 version that was recently unveiled.”

The Ford Maverick makes its debut on the list in the sixteenth position. “October was the first full month of sales for the all-new compact pickup truck, and it had a successful debut outselling its only direct competitor, the Hyundai Santa Cruz,” said Brauer. “Ford has struggled to keep up with demand since it became available and has over 100,000 reservations for the vehicle.”

Two Mercedes SUVs round out the list: the GLS full-size SUV and the GLE midsize SUV. “Mercedes-Benz recently cancelled production of V8 versions of the Mercedes-Benz GLS and GLE for the 2022 model year due to the chip shortage, which likely increased demand for the 2021 model,” said Brauer.

Fastest-Selling Used Vehicles

iSeeCars also analyzed the top 20 fastest-selling used vehicles. The average used car takes 44.7 days to sell, while the top 20 fastest-selling vehicles average 26.8 days and sell 1.5 to 2.2 times faster than the average used vehicle. The list of fastest-selling used vehicles includes a mix of body styles and drivetrains, led by alternative-fuel vehicles.

Top 20 Fastest-Selling Used Vehicles in October 2021- iSeeCars Study
RankVehicleAverage Days to Sell Average Price
1Honda Insight20.5$25,596
2Toyota Prius Prime21.2$26,310
3Tesla Model 321.5$48,282
4Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross23.2$20,015
5Honda HR-V23.3$23,334
6Honda Clarity Plug-In Hybrid23.9$24,792
7Toyota Prius24.8$23,132
8Porsche 718 Cayman25.4$70,819
9Mercedes-Benz A-Class25.6$34,857
10Mitsubishi Outlander26.4$21,655
11Honda CR-V26.5$28,282
12Toyota Highlander Hybrid27.6$43,104
13Subaru BRZ27.7$28,953
14Honda Accord Hybrid28.9$27,958
15BMW 4 Series28.9$39,177
16Mercedes-Benz E-Class29.0$47,183
17MINI Clubman29.0$24,113
18Honda Civic29.7$21,708
19Mitsubishi Mirage G430.1$14,110
20Toyota RAV4 Hybrid30.2$33,064
Average for All Used Vehicles44.7$31,927

The fastest-selling used vehicle is the Honda Insight hybrid sedan, which is joined by six additional hybrid vehicles including the Toyota Prius Prime, the Honda Clarity Plug-In Hybrid, the Toyota Prius, the Toyota Highlander Hybrid, the Honda Accord Hybrid, and the Toyota RAV4 Hybrid. “The Honda Insight debuted in 2019, while the Honda Clarity debuted in 2018, meaning that most used versions are just now becoming available and are in high demand,” said Brauer. “Just as in the new car marketplace, Toyota’s used hybrid and plug-in vehicles are hot sellers due to their reliability and advanced technology, not to mention fuel prices that have shot up more than 25 percent over the past 12 months.”

The Tesla Model 3 ranks third after being the fastest-selling used vehicle for four consecutive months. “The Tesla Model 3 has remained popular since its highly anticipated debut, thanks to impressive technology and performance at a relatively affordable price compared to Tesla’s earlier vehicles,” said Brauer. “A new version of the Model 3’s Standard Range Plus variant is sold out for the remainder of 2021 to further add to the already-high demand for used versions, some of which are being sold at higher prices than new versions.” 

Multiple sports cars and luxury cars make the list, including the Porsche 718 Cayman, the Mercedes-Benz A-Class, the Subaru BRZ, the BMW 4 Series, and the Mercedes-Benz E-Class. “Sports and luxury cars were popular throughout the pandemic, and their popularity has continued as consumers have a heightened desire to make purchases that bring them joy,” said Brauer.

Two compact Mitsubishis make the list, including the Eclipse Cross and the Outlander. “These small SUVs do not achieve favorable reliability ratings, but likely resonate with consumers because of their affordability, with the 500x and the Eclipse cross having the lowest average used car price of all used SUVs,” said Brauer.

“As demand continues to outpace supply for new cars, consumers should act quickly if they see their desired vehicle for sale, and buyers will likely need to be flexible on color and trim options for in-demand models,” said Brauer.  

More from iSeeCars.com:

Methodology

iSeeCars.com analyzed over 200,000 new and used car sales (model years 2016-2020 for used cars) from October 2021. The number of days that each car was listed for sale on iSeeCars.com was aggregated at the model level, and the average days on market for each was mathematically modeled. Heavy-duty vehicles, models not in production prior to the 2021 model year, and low-volume models were excluded from further analysis.

About iSeeCars.com

iSeeCars.com is a car search engine that helps shoppers find the best car deals by providing key insights and valuable resources, like the iSeeCars free VIN check reports and Best Cars rankings. iSeeCars.com has saved users over $313 million so far by applying big data analytics powered by over 25 billion (and growing) data points and using proprietary algorithms to objectively analyze, score and rank millions of new cars and used cars.

This article, the Hottest New and Used Cars in October, originally appeared on iSeeCars.com.

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