Car Sales Haven't Been This Crappy Since 1983

Americans only bought just under 1 million new cars last month, which is the weakest August since the 993,100 sold in 1983. This figure looks extra weak in comparison to last August, when the Cash for Clunkers program was in full force. Now, the business is quite different.

“Car buying is far from repaired, and consumers hesitate before they make a big ticket purchase,” said Jesse Toprak, an analyst with the auto pricing Web site Truecar.com. “It shows that the recovery is going to be much slower and more painful than expected.”

Well, that, or the hard lessons of this recession have reminded people that their old cars work just fine, and maybe they don’t need a new one right now.

Auto sales: Worst August since 1983 [CNN Money]