These are the Most Popular 2022 Car Models

The 2022 models from manufacturers dropped in 2021. With the supply chip crunch, though, some models might have had limited production. Others might not stay on the lot. While every year has popular models, 2021 and 2022 have been unique in that many models are selling quickly—even used and pre-owned options

With a supply crunch comes higher prices, but the sticker prices aren’t necessarily keeping buyers from the dealerships. While dealerships might be flooded with buyer interest, the most popular 2022 car models sell quickly and might be very difficult to find.

Car and Driver rounded up the vehicles that have been impacted by the shortage. Some of the most popular models impacted by the chip crisis included:

  • Audi Q7
  • Porsche Cayenne
  • Volkswagen Touareg
  • Chevrolet Camaro, Equinox, Malibu, Traverse
  • Cadillac XT4, XT5 and XT6
  • GMC Acadia
  • Ford F-150
  • Ford: Bronco Sport, F-150, Explorer, Mustang
  • Jeep Grand Cherokee
  • Dodge Durango
  • Mercedes-Benz C-Class
  • Mini Cooper
  • Nissan: Altima, Leaf, Maxima, Murano, Rogue

The list from Car and Driver is much more extensive, but it also was released back in April 2021. However, buyers should know that new models are released in the fall. That means that in Fall 2021, 2022 models were expected to drop. The list, therefore, was a bit of an early warning for buyers hoping to score a new model.

What are the Most Popular Cars?

Ford’s F-Series is America’s favorite automobile. It consistently ranks as a top-seller, and it also was featured on Car and Driver’s list of the models affected by the chip crisis. Car buyers hoping for a Ford truck might still have difficulty finding new models, although supply might depend on the area.

Car and Driver also ranked the most popular (i.e. best selling) vehicles for 2021 according to sales data. The F-Series took the top spot—more than 726,000 were sold. The Ram Pickup was the second most popular (more than 569,000 sold), the Chevrolet Silverado was the third best-selling vehicle (more than 519,000 were sold). Toyota’s small SUV the RAV4 ranked fourth, with more than 407,000 sold. Rounding out the top five was the Honda CR-V (more than 361,000 sold).

The U.S. drivers seem to favor trucks and small SUVs, although the Toyota Camry was the sixth most popular vehicle sold in 2021. Neither Toyota nor Mazda were on the list among those with models impacted by the shortage.

2022 Car Models

Are 2022 Models Hard to Find?

Car buyers might wonder if finding a new 2022 model is still difficult. Unfortunately, demand for both new and used cars is still high. This means that prices also are higher than buyers would like.

Certain models might still be difficult to find. However, even if a model wasn’t among those on the list from Car and Driver that doesn’t mean it’s going to be easy to find one on a dealership lot. Cars are driving off the lot quickly.

Buyers also shouldn’t assume that new cars are like the toilet paper crunch from the early Covid days. While, yes, supply is tighter, buyers won’t necessarily find empty car lots or dealerships. Certain models are more difficult to find, but this might mean that buyers need to have a backup plan.

If a buyer really wants to purchase a Ford F-150, would they be happy with a Silverado? Maybe a Ram would be a great option. A pre-owned model also could be considered.

In times when the supply is crunchy, buyers might need to plan ahead. Research different vehicles and make a list of the five favorite options. Also, buyers probably shouldn’t be too picky on color. However, dealerships also might be able to order a vehicle for the buyer (in the color they want).

What Are the Best 2022 Car Models?

There are the most popular car models, there also are the 2022 models that were among those affected by the chip shortage, but what are the best 2022 models? Are there particular vehicles that are more reliable or that offer a better design?

For budget-buyers, KBB ranked the Honda Civic as the best hatchback for 2022. The Civic has a base price of $23,350. The Civic hatchback also received a Top Safety Pick+ rating from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS).

Buyers who want to focus on other 2022 models with the best safety ratings could also consider a Toyota Sienna (minivan), Nissan Altima, Toyota Camry, Subaru Outback, Kia Stinger, Chevrolet Trailblazer, Hyundai Tucson, Mazda CX-5, Honda Odyssey and many more models.

The least expensive model for 2022 might be the Chevrolet Spark. The compact Spark is priced at $13,600 and is very fuel efficient (38 MPG on the highway, 30 MPG in the city).

The most fuel efficient 2022 model is the Mitsubishi Mirage. With a base price of $14,645, it’s priced slightly higher than the Chevrolet Spark. However, the Mirage can get 39 MPG combined, making it the most fuel efficient option on the market that isn’t a hybrid or an electric vehicle.

2022 Car Models

Shopping for New 2022 Car Models

When car buyers are shopping for a new 2022 car model, they might want to keep their options open. Inventory might be a bit more limited in some areas than in others, but dealerships across the country are feeling the crunch.

Unfortunately for buyers, this is not the ideal time to become super fastidious about features or even paint color. Some models might be missing some features because of the low chip supply, and if a buyer is fortunate to find the car they want, the color might be a small trade-off for scoring their ideal vehicle.

Although prices are higher at dealerships, buyers might still wish to negotiate. One of the best negotiating chips that buyers have right now is regarding the price of a trade-in. Car prices are rising, but this is good for buyers who have a car to offer dealerships.

Using a car for a trade-in can help lower the cost of the new vehicle. Buyers also might be shocked to know that the prices of older models have bumped up, too. In fact, it was reported that a car owner actually sold a seven-year old car for more than he originally paid for it!

That older car can be worth much more than buyers expect, but they need to do their research to find out the true value of that older vehicle. Before heading to the dealership, car owners should use sites like Kelley Blue Book to research their car’s value. KBB will require the owner to include many details about the car, but the site is a great way for buyers to go into the dealership knowing their car’s worth.

Car buyers also should research their car options online. Visit dealership websites to find out who is offering the best prices or who might have the best deals. Some sites let buyers do a comprehensive search across multiple dealerships.

Many dealership prices might be comparable. If a car buyer sees the model they want, though, they might reach out to the dealership and make contact. As car buyers are focusing on used car options, too, buyers in some markets might have some competitors.

While car buyers might still want to take their time to find the car they want at the best prices, they also need to be aware of the inventory situation in their area. Some states might be tougher to navigate than others with the current shortage.  

Should Buyers Wait for 2023 Models?

Not all car buyers are in a rush to buy a new vehicle. For those just looking, perhaps waiting would be a great option. In the fall, new 2023 models will be released. This will, hopefully, add some more inventory to dealerships and give buyers more selection.

In addition, the chip shortage won’t last forever. The supply crunch also isn’t permanent. The market will take a turn, and those who can wait might find more buying options and better prices.

Those who need a car now, though, might simply need to navigate the dealerships in their market to find the best 2022 car model that fits both their driving needs and their budget. Those who have a trade-in to offer might be in a better bargaining position, but, again, car owners should research their trade-in so they know exactly how much their car is worth.

Previewing 2023 Models

Buyers who are waiting for 2023 models in the fall also can keep an eye on sites like RelayCars. The site provides buyers with an immersive way of exploring new models. RelayCars adds new models constantly; when buyers visit the site online, they can explore vehicles in 3D models or in augmented reality.

Car buyers also can download the RelayCars app. The app provides 3D car model exploration experiences; users can explore cars with a fingertip! The RelayCars app also lets users explore vehicles in virtual reality using Google Cardboard.

Watch the app and the website as 2023 models will be added as soon as they begin to drive into dealerships!