A luxury sports car sits on display in a dealership in Manhattan on November 30, 2017 in New York City.
Spencer Platt | Getty Images
The coronavirus, led by stay-at-home regulations, brought U.S. vehicle sales to a grinding halt in many areas of the country and the worst is still yet to come, according to industry officials.
Any sales gains achieved in January or February by automakers were essentially erased last month as sales fell off a cliff as some states banned dealers from even conducting online sales due to COVID-19. The orders, until lifted, are expected to continue taking their toll on the auto industry going forward.
“Our expectation is that it gets worse from here,” Cox Automotive Chief Economist Charles Chesbrough told CNBC on Wednesday as the majority of automakers reported substantial sales declines for March and the first-quarter. “The news is going to get really bad.”
What was expected to be a down, yet still robust, sales year of about 16.5 million to 17 million…