Costco Auto: Japanese Earthquake Limits Car Inventory

July 28th, 2011 · 3 Comments

As I’m sure you all remember, there was a big earthquake and tsunami that devastated parts of  Japan this past March.  What you might not have been so aware of though, is how that has affected the auto industry.  Those disasters have had a huge impact on the supply of new vehicles throughout the world.  Certainly the disruption to the new car supply is only temporary, however, if you’re looking to buy a car right now it just might have a huge impact on what you can get at the moment.

In the meantime, the nice people at Costco’s auto program have a couple of ways they are working to help out their members.  They have put together a list of which vehicles have been affected.  This list, updated a couple of weeks ago, indicates which vehicles are in low supply currently.  You can check up on the list via the Costco Auto Program website but I’ve included the July updates as part of this post.

List of vehicles in short supply:

  • Acura: all models (most notably – RL, TSX)
  • Honda: all models (most notably – Civic Hybrid, CR-Z, Fit and Insight)
  • Lexus: all models
  • Mazda: CX-9
  • Mitsubishi: most models
  • Nissan: Juke, Leaf, and Sentra
    • Murano CrossCabriolet launch has been delayed
  • Toyota: most models (most notably – Japan-assembled FJ Cruiser, Land Cruiser, Rav-4 and Yaris)
  • Subaru: all models
  • Suzuki: most models

If you find that the vehicle you have been contemplating is on that list and you are just unable to get one, the Costco Auto Program reps are also available to give you suggestions on similar vehicles that might be more readily available now.

As well as some vehicles being in low supply, rebates and incentives have also been reduced because with fewer cars available, the auto industry has less need to incentivize buyers (unfortunately).  You can also keep up to date on available rebates and incentives via the Costco Auto website.

Most manufacturers predict that the supply to be back to normal by the end of 2011.


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3 Responses so far ↓

  1. 1 Jennifer // 2011.07.29 at 7:09 pm

    Hello Adam and Tle,

    We’re sorry to hear that you didn’t receive the Costco experience while at the dealership. We strive to provide Costco member’s with aggressive pricing on their preferred vehicle as well as a good experience throughout the car buying process.

    Our Member Advocacy Group, designed to assist members throughout their purchasing process, would like to speak with you about your experience. We want to ensure all members are given the Costco experience and price and that our process is followed correctly.

    The Member Advocacy Group uses member feedback to monitor and evaluate our participating dealers. To speak with a Member Advocate please call us at (800) 404-5623. We are available Monday through Friday from 7:00 am to 6:00 pm Pacific time.

    Thank you,

    Member Advocacy Group
    Costco Auto Program

  2. 2 Tle // 2011.07.29 at 11:55 am

    Yep, bought an acura tsx wagon. Not much of an incentive. They gave us the costco pricing and shafted us on the trade in. Acura manager even said that they are going to stop participating in the Costco program. They did not show me the paperwork that Costco requires them to do. So I told them, “Are you still with the costco program at this moment?” If yes then honor it. Don’t tell me that you will stop participating in the future therefore you won’t give me the Costco benefits now. They were only nice to me afterward when I told them I have bought a 1991 Legend, 2003 MDX, and a used 1991 NSX from the same exact dealer. So like Adam says, still got to do your homework before walking in.
    In my case, a VW TDI wagon would have cost much less, get better gas mileage but the car was for my mom and she wanted a reliable car that she will drive into retirement.

  3. 3 Adam // 2011.07.28 at 3:15 pm

    Tried buying a honda pilot through costco auto. quotes were $1k better right off the bat. Surprised me.

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