If you think buying a new car is an investment you are severely mistaken. A car is a depreciating asset.
Yeah, used car prices have gone up due to very special circumstances. But word is used (and new) car prices are coming down.
If you get an offer too good to refuse for your used car and do not need the car and want the cash to do something else with -- even if it is to buy another car -- then sell your car.
This part of your response could not be further from the facts. There is now, and will continue to be over the next year to 18 months, a SEVERE lack of inventory. Auto manufacturers are having enough trouble building in quantities to supply current demand, let alone restock every dealer.
Our inventory levels (top 5 Toyota dealer nationally every year) Pre chip shortage fluctuated between 1200 and 1500 units in ground stock. This was about a 45 day supply. We currently, as of today, have 4 new Toyotas. Not 400, 4. We are having to sell through our allocations every month to keep sales at the level we need them to sustain our business. Toyota can barely keep up with us, and we are just one of 1200 dealers in the US. How do you presume they are going to build enough cars to meet global demand? To resupply ground stock to all those dealers?
This, of course, does not take in to account the rest of the imports, or the domestics. There simply is no way to make this happen over the short run. You can bet your ass that the manufacturers are watching the lack of resistance to paying price premiums, and are going to find a way to raise retail pricing to capture that revenue for themselves.
The price premiums, lack of new car inventory, and pressure on the used car market will continue to push used car prices higher. When will it come falling back down to earth? Who knows. I can tell you this though, the car industry has changed drastically, maybe permanently.