March Cox Automotive Dealer Sentiment Index

As we enter the first quarter of 2023, the automotive industry is witnessing significant changes and disruptions. From emerging technologies to changing consumer preferences, the industry is evolving at a rapid pace, and automotive companies must adapt to stay ahead of the curve.

In this article, we’ll explore the latest trends and developments in the automotive industry and analyze the implications for automotive companies, dealerships, and consumers.

The Cox Automotive Dealer Sentiment Index (CADSI)

One of the most reliable measures of the automotive industry’s health is the Cox Automotive Dealer Sentiment Index (CADSI). This quarterly index surveys auto dealers across the United States and provides a snapshot of their perceptions of the current market conditions, their outlook for the future, and the challenges they face.

According to the latest CADSI report for Q1 2023, auto dealers’ sentiment has improved significantly since the previous quarter. The overall CADSI score for Q1 2023 is 56, up from 51 in the previous quarter. This indicates that dealers are more optimistic about the current market conditions and their future prospects.

However, the report also highlights some of the challenges facing auto dealers, including inventory shortages, rising prices of new and used vehicles, and increasing competition from online retailers.

The Impact of Emerging Technologies

The automotive industry is undergoing a technological revolution, with new innovations and advancements transforming the way we drive and use cars. From electric vehicles to autonomous driving, these emerging technologies are changing the face of the industry and creating new opportunities and challenges for automotive companies and dealerships.

One of the most significant trends in the automotive industry is the shift towards electric vehicles (EVs). As governments worldwide implement policies to reduce carbon emissions and combat climate change, the demand for EVs is increasing rapidly. According to the International Energy Agency (IEA), the number of electric cars on the road is expected to reach 145 million by 2030, up from just 3 million in 2017.

This shift towards EVs is creating new opportunities for automotive companies, particularly those that specialize in electric and hybrid vehicles. However, it also poses significant challenges for traditional automakers, who must adapt their manufacturing processes and supply chains to meet the demands of the EV market.

Another emerging technology with the potential to disrupt the automotive industry is autonomous driving. While fully autonomous vehicles are still in development, semi-autonomous features like advanced driver-assistance systems (ADAS) are already available in many new cars. These features use sensors, cameras, and other technologies to enhance safety and convenience, and they are becoming increasingly popular among consumers.

The rise of autonomous driving presents new opportunities for automotive companies, particularly those that specialize in software and data analytics. However, it also raises concerns about job losses in the transportation sector and the need for new regulations to ensure safety and privacy.

Changing Consumer Preferences

The automotive industry is also experiencing significant changes in consumer preferences and behavior. As younger generations enter the market, they bring with them different expectations and values than previous generations, forcing automotive companies to adapt their strategies to meet these changing demands.

One of the most significant changes in consumer behavior is the growing preference for online shopping and digital experiences. As consumers become more comfortable with e-commerce, they are increasingly turning to online retailers to buy cars, parts, and accessories. This trend is creating new opportunities for online retailers and forcing traditional dealerships to adapt their sales and marketing strategies to compete.

Another trend in consumer behavior is the growing demand for sustainable and ethical products. As we mentioned earlier, the shift towards electric vehicles is partly driven by consumers’ desire for more environmentally friendly transportation options. Additionally, consumers are increasingly concerned about the ethical and social impacts of their purchases, leading to a growing demand for fair trade, organic, and sustainably sourced products.


The automotive industry is undergoing significant changes and disruptions.

Source: Cox Automotive Dealer Sentiment Index: Strong U.S. Auto Market Performance Expected in Q2