WOLF STREET “Pickup Truck & Car Price Index” for 2021 Models Crushes Official “CPI for New Vehicles” | Wolf Street

The low-end Camry L got axed for the 2021 model year, and the base version of the LE is the rock-bottom Camry you can buy. The Camry was redesigned for the 2018 model year, which, as is typical, came with a jump in price. In between redesigns, prices change little. So MSRP for the 2021 model is $24,970, unchanged from the 2020 model, but up 70% from the MSRP of a 1990 Camry LE.

The MSRP for 2021 F-Series trucks ranges from $28,940 for the base F-150 XL to nearly $100,000 for a Crew Cab Lariat 4×4 with all the options, bells, and whistles. The base F-150 XLT is one step up from the XL. The 2021 model got a redesign – a revised nose, new headlights, new taillights, and some other things. And as you expected, the redesign came with a price increase: the F-150 XLT base MSRP, after remaining unchanged last year, rose by $890 to $35,050. This is up a stunning 170% from 1990!

The chart below shows the MSRP of the F-150 XLT for each model year (+170% since 1990, blue bars, left scale), the MSRP of the Camry LE (+70% since 1990, red line, left scale), and the Consumer Price Index for New Vehicles by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (+21% since 1990, green line, right scale), which is now about where it had been in 1997, an indication that somehow there was no inflation in the prices of new vehicles:

WOLF STREET “Pickup Truck & Car Price Index” for 2021 Models Crushes Official “CPI for New Vehicles” | Wolf Street

But the minimum wage for workers making these car parts remains stuck since generations ago, at about 7 bucks per hour.