NEW YORK – Car dealers nationwide are at records lows on inventory because of the Covid-forced shortage in semiconductor chips. Globally the crisis has cost the auto industry $210 billion through December, according to the tracking and consulting firm AlixPartners. The projected auto production loss: 7.7 million units. Dealers will take orders but make only vague promises on delivery.

Lonely lots. Normallyfull lots at Chevrolet-Buick mega-dealer Lewiston Auto are mostly empty. The sales building, normally surrounded by shiny new cars, is mostly empty. An auxiliary lot for 90 new trucks has but 13. Images: Steve Lunde

Where’s the merchandise? At Lewiston Auto there is no hustle. Like all dealerships, a lonely place.