Where the World's Unsold Cars Go To Die

Tyler Durden's picture

In the past several years, one of the topics covered in detail on these pages has been the surge in such gimmicks designed to disguise lack of demand and end customer sales, used extensively by US automotive manufacturers, better known as "channel stuffing", of which General Motors is particularly guilty and whose inventory at dealer lots just hit a new record high. But did you know that when it comes to flat or declining sales and stagnant end demand, channel stuffing is merely the beginning?


Where the World's Unsold Cars Go To Die (courtesy of Vincent Lewis' Unsold Cars)

Above is just a few of the thousands upon thousands of unsold cars at Sheerness, United Kingdom.  Please do see this on Google Maps....type in Sheerness, United Kingdom.  Look to the west coast, below River Thames next to River Medway. Left of A249, Brielle Way.

Timestamp: Friday, May 16th, 2014.

There are hundreds of places like this in the world today and they keep on piling up...


Houston...We have a problem!...Nobody is buying brand new cars anymore!  Well they are, but not on the scale they once were.  Millions of brand new unsold cars are just sitting redundant on runways and car parks around the world.  There, they stay, slowly deteriorating without being maintained.

Below is an image of a massive car park at Swindon, United Kingdom, with thousands upon thousands of unsold cars just sitting there with not a buyer in sight. The car manufacturers have to buy more and more land just to park their cars as they perpetually roll off the production line.

There is proof that the worlds recession is still biting and wont let go.  All around the world there are huge stockpiles of unsold cars and they are being added to every day.  They have run out of space to park all of these brand new unsold cars and are having to buy acres and acres of land to store them.


The images on this webpage showing all of these unsold cars are just a very small portion of those around the world.  There are literally thousands of these "car parks" rammed full of unsold cars in practically every country on the planet.  Just in case you were wondering, these images have not been Photoshopped, they are the real deal!

Its hard to believe that there are so many unsold cars in the world but its true.  The worse part is that the amount of unsold cars keeps on getting bigger every day.

It would be fair to say that it is becoming a mechanical epidemic of epic proportions.  If anybody from outer space is reading this webpage, we here on Earth have too many cars, why not come and buy a few hundred thousand of them for your own planet! (sorry but this is all I can think of)

Below is shown just a few of the 57,000 cars (and growing) that await delivery from their home in the Port of Baltimore, Maryland, U.S.A. With Google Maps look South of Broening Hwy in Dundalk for the massive expanse of space where all these cars are parked up.

The car industry would never sell these cars at massive reductions in their prices to get rid of them, no they still want every buck.  If they were to price these cars for a couple of thousand they would sell them.  However, nobody would then buy any expensive cars and then they  would end up being unsold.  Its quite a pickle we have gotten ourselves into.

Below is shown an image of the Nissan test track in Sunderland United Kingdom.  Only it is no longer being used, reason...there are too many unsold cars parked up on it!  The amount of cars keeps on piling up on it until its overflowing.  Nissan then acquires more land to park up the cars, as they continue to come off the production line.

UPDATE: Currently May 16th, 2014, all of these cars at the Nissan Sunderland test track have disappeared? Now I don't believe they have all suddenly been sold.  I would guess they may have been taken away and recycled to make room for the next vast production run.

Indeed next to that test track and adjacent to the Nissan factory, they are collating again as shown on the Google Maps image below.  So where did the last lot go? This is not an employees car park by the way.

None of the images on this webpage are of ordinary car parks at shopping malls, football matches etc.  Trust me, they are just mountains and mountains of brand spanking new unsold cars. There is no real reason why you should be driving an old clunker now is there?

The car industry cannot stop making new cars because they would have to close their factories and lay off tens of thousands of employees.  This would further add to the recession.  Also the domino effect would be catastrophic as steel manufactures would not sell their steel. All the tens of thousands of places where car components are made would also be effected, indeed the world could come to a grinding halt.

Below is shown just a small area of a gigantic car park  in Spain where tens of thousands of cars just sit and sunbathe all day.

They are also piling up at the port of Valencia in Spain as seen below.  They are either waiting to be exported to...nowhere or have been imported...to go nowhere.

Tens of thousands of cars are still being made every week but hardly any of them are being sold.  Nearly every household in developed countries already has a car or even two or three cars parked up on their driveway as it is.

Below is an image of thousands upon thousands of unsold cars parked up on a runway near St Petersburg in Russia.  They are all imported from Europe, they are all then parked up and they are all then left to rot. Consequently, the airport is now unusable for its original purpose.

The cycle of buying, using, buying using has been broken, it is now just a case of "using" with no buying. Below is an image of thousands of unsold cars parked up on an disused runway at Upper Heyford, Bicester, Oxfordshire. They are seriously running out of space to store these cars.

It is a sorry state of affairs and there is no answer to it, solutions don't exist.  So the cars just keep on being manufactured and keep on adding to the millions of unsold cars already sitting redundant around the world.

Below are parked tens of thousands of cars at Royal Portbury Docks, Avonmouth, near Bristol in the United Kingdom. If you look on Google Maps and scan around the area at say 200ft you will see nothing but parked up unsold cars. They are absolutley everywhere in that area practically every open space has unsold cars parked up on it.

Below is that same area in Avonmouth, UK, but zoomed out. Every gray space that you see is filled with unsold cars.  Anyone want to hazard a guess at how many are there...

As it is, there are more cars than there are people on the planet with an estimated 10 billion roadworthy cars in the world today.

We literally cannot make enough of them. Below are seen just a few of the thousands of Citroen's parked up at Corby, Northamptonshire in England. They are being added to daily, imported from France but with nowhere else to go once they arrive.

So there they sit, brand spanking new cars, all with a couple of miles on the clock that was consummate with them being driven to their car parks.  Below is the latest May 2014 Google Maps image of unsold cars in Corby, Northamptonshire.

Manufacturing more cars than can be sold is against all logic, logistics and economics but it continues day after day, week after week, month after month, year in year out.

Below is shown a recent (April 2014) screen grab from Google Maps of the Italian port of Civitavecchia.  All those little specks are a few thousand brand new unsold Peugeots.  Just collecting dust and maybe a bit of salty sea spray!

Below, all nice and shiny but with nowhere to go.  Red and white and black and silver, purple, pink and blue, all the colors of the rainbow and be they all brand new.  Indeed all the colors of the rainbow are down there on those cars, making pretty mosaics, montages of color and still life.  Maybe that is all they will now ever be, surreal urban art of the techno production age.  Magnificent metal boxes, wasting space and saving grace, all sitting still, because its business at mill.

All around the world these cars just keep on piling up, there is no end in sight.  The economy shouts out quite loud that nobody has the money anymore to spend on a new car. The reason being that they are making their "old" cars go on a lot longer.  But we cannot stop making them, soon we will run out of space to park them.  We are nearly running out of space to drive them that's for sure!

Below, more cars mount up in the port of Valencia in Spain. They will not be exported as there is nowhere for them to go, so they just sit and rot in their colorful droves.

Gone are the days when the family would have a new car every year, they are now keeping what they have got.  It may be fair to say that some  families still get a new car every year but its the majority that now do not.

The results are in these images, hundreds of thousands if not millions of cars around the world are driven from their factories, parked up and left.

Could we say that these cars have been left to rot!  Maybe, as these cars will certainly rot if they are not bought, driven and cared for.  It does not look like they will be sold any day soon, many of them have been standing for over 12 months or even longer and this is detrimental to the car.

Below, as far as the eye can see, right into the background, cars, cars and more cars. But what's beyond the horizon?  Have a guess...Yes that's right...even more cars!  All brand new but with no homes to go to.  Do you think they will ever start giving them away, that may be the only radical solution.  Who knows, you could soon be getting a free car with every packet of cornflakes.

When a car is left standing idle, all the oil sinks to the bottom of the sump, and then corrosion begins to set in on all the internal engine parts where the oil has drained away.

Cold corrosion is when condensation builds up in the cylinders and rust forms in the bores. The engines would then start to seize and would need to be professionally freed before they could be started.  Also the tires start to lose air and the batteries start to go flat, indeed the detrimental list goes on and on.

So the longer they sit there the worse it slowly becomes for them.  What is the answer to this?  Well they need to be sold and that just isn't happening.

The epidemic is not improving, it is getting worse.  Car manufactureres are constantly coming out with new models with the latest technology in them.  Hence prospective buyers of, for example, a new Citroen Xsara Picasso want the latest model, not last years model.  Hence all the unsold Citroen Xsara Picasso cars from the previous year will now have even lesser chance of being sold.

The problems then just keep on mounting up.  In the end, the unsold cars that are say 2 years old will have no alternative but to be either crushed up, dismantled and/or their parts recycled.

Some car manufacturers moved their production over to China, General Motors and Cadillac are examples of this.  They are then shipped over in containers and unloaded at ports.  However they are now being told to put a big halt in their import into the U.S.A. as they just can't sell them in the quantities they would desire.  Consequently Chinese car parks are now filling up with brand new American cars.  Well nobody in China can afford them on their meagre pittance wages, so there they will stay until our economy improves...which it might do in a few generations.

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kchrisc's picture

Letter from the IRS:

Dear victim,

Be advised that you records indicate low participation in the economy. Therefore we removed $1,000 from your bank account and put it toward a purchase of a new GM Cobalt for you. It's blue with "pleather" seats. We could not get eclectic windows, but we did secure a CD player for you.

You may pick up your new vehicle from our local office, bring ID and wear loose clothing for the security pat-down.

We also conveniently signed you up for "auto-pay." Your $423 plus $23 service fee plus our $13.13 "economy participation" fee will be deducted from your account monthly. So there is nothing you have to do.

Be aware, failure to make your payments will result in us filing a lien against your house and that nice boat you have. (We're still not sure how you could afford that boat with the salary you make. Another time, though.)

Sincerely and thank you for supporting the economy.

The head DC US thieves and political which-hunters

Chief Wonder Bread's picture

P.S. and if you don't own anything to put a lien on, we'll refer your case to one of our friendly collection agents to squeeze you like a lemon



homiegot's picture

Hotlinking? Tsk tsk...

oooBooo's picture

Apparently these are just the places where cars are parked until they are shipped. Most factories have distribution warehouses, but cars are too big so they are parked outside in lots or at docks or other places where they can be shipped from. If you walked into any factory's finished goods warehouse you'd be just as shocked. Only in times of incredible demand are such places even close to empty.

None of the images (had to find the original business insider article here: http://www.businessinsider.com/unsold-cars-around-the-world-2009-2 ) are of dumping grounds. Many of them are five or more years old.

The more of these articles I see here on things I know about the less I am going to trust the others.

metastar's picture

Nice investigative sleuthing. It sucks to learn the truth after forwarding the article links to others. It causes one to lose their credibility.

No doubt the MSM has also engaged in such shenanigans.

lasvegaspersona's picture

isn't 'hot linking' usually done in the back seat of the car?

homiegot's picture

We are so, so fucked.

Totentänzerlied's picture

There's a fenced-in private parking lot near here, used to be overflow parking for a private college, now it's filled with brand new Hyundais and BMWs. As soon as I saw it I knew what was up.

Commodore64's picture

Pssst....wanna buy a new car for cheap?

MarkD's picture

I see new single and multi family dwelings

Australian Economist's picture

The obvious problem is that inflation is too low.


If they just jacked up the prices those cars would be selling like hotcakes.

IndianaJohn's picture

I'm paying $200 per short ton for untitled new cars. Only a few bucks less for 'creampuff' used cars. Older cars in unoxidized condition, $175 per ton.

I will empty those storage lots for current scrap price plus a small service fee. And to add; the authors of this too long article, have never actually managed an auto storage lot.

Stand on that gas pedal!

blindman's picture

a little miss allocation, miss understanding , miss appropriation,
and miss adventure for the miss educated by miss pricing
due to ??????????
the fed money shit hole and associated tape worms.
Cream - "Steppin' Out - 1966
i blame the music. ??? what?

I Write Code's picture

And every one is packed with ammunition, Fed-owned mortgage backed securities and fake Hawaiian birth certificates.

Yen Cross's picture

   Who's got the largest "prison population"?  Ding...Ding USSA!

  Gotta love those " Black & (tans) whites!


    I'll wear the junk as an badge of honor!

blindman's picture

can one spell daflation?

Sick's picture

I know a guy who lived and worked in Romania when it was part of the USSR.  He told me that they would dig holes one day and then fill them up the next day.  Something similar is probably happening here.  Build cars today, destroy them tommorow.

caustixoid's picture

1) Romania was part of the East Bloc, but not part of the USSR  and 2) the Keynesian fallacy of hole digging/filling growing the economy did not literally happen anywhere.  Still, good analogy.

mrpxsytin's picture

Well it's happening right now in my local council. They have been digging holes then planting trees in them, then digging up the trees and filling the holes in again. Also, they have dug holes to put bike racks in, then dug up those bike racks, to put different bike racks in.

JB's picture

it's been happening on Interstate 71 between Columbus and Cleveland for the last 35 years. seriously, it's only 150 miles. are you telling me it takes 35+ YEARS to add two lanes of highway to an existing one?


meanwhile, our neighbors to the north have made an absolutely beautiful highway out of blasted granite on Highway 69 between Barrie and Sudbury in about ten years. people in the States pay big money for granite counter tops. the Candians drive on that shit. 

Tabarnaque's picture

Welcome to the world of Central Planning and Government Bail Outs of fat cats!

The Most Interesting Frog in the World's picture

Went by mall parking lot in Washington DC suburb - around 8:00 AM this morning.  There were literally several hundred if not a thousand cars, many makes and models, new and used, sitting in the mall parking lot.  These were not employees, no license plates on these vehicles.  Only several miles away, hundreds more cars in the parking lot of joint commercial office buildings.  Not only are these cars being "stuffed" at "extended" dealer inventory lots (and not being sold), but I thought to myself, 1) mall traffic must be way down if they can afford to give up so many spaces and 2) these two huge office buildings must be completely empty as the entire parking lot of these two fairly large buildings were completely filled.  Seems we have ghost malls, ghost office buildings and, I guess, ghost cars, right here in the good ole US of A...

the grateful unemployed's picture

i just want to see one picture or one affadavit of a new car being destroyed or salvaged.

FeralSerf's picture

If you see one, they'll have to kill you.

sangell's picture

Wow! Like WW2 when they just destroyed thousands of newly built trucks, airplanes and the like so it wouldn't compete with post war demand. I worked at a college that had bought lots of war surplus ( apparently schools could bid on the stuff) and they had bought surplus quonset huts to store the stuff in. When I opened one it was full of thousands of 35 year old light bulbs or all wattages, thousands of rolls of friction and electricians tape, really expensive testing equipment still brand new in hardsuitcases, bomb hoists ( I put one of those my pickup truck) and electrical wire.

the grateful unemployed's picture

+1000) its been a war hasn't it, and the war is over.

Infinite QE's picture

Could make some interesting crop circles out of these collections. It's too bad that GM management has so f'ed up their products as the new Cadillac STS looks quite awesome.

hairball48's picture

I live in one of the three incorporated cities in the county, pop. <8,000. County pop is < 100,000.

Every day I drive by a GM dealer and I'll bet my life he has over a 1000 vehicles on the main lot. And recently I noticed he has bought or leased property across the highway to put even more cars. WTF???

And that is just ONE dealer and one brand.

Fucking morons

My 19 year old Ranger with 254,000+ will probably die right outside my window...maybe with me in it LOL!

NickVegas's picture

Kudos my friend, 19 year old ranger with 265,000. Works fine, plus I don't want the black box, or cameras, or built in tracking devices or speed governors. Ford is still hoping I trade up to one of their, wait for it, $64K top end new F-150s. Not gonna happen.

deerhunter's picture

the 80/94 corridor on the souther end of Lake Michigan is one of the heaviest traveled 30 miles for traffic in the country,  especially truck traffic.  There are currently many of those huge billboards for lease.  The Tri-State Tollway which runs NW from there also is full of billboards for lease.  10 million residents in 6 counties and that kind of traffic and empty billboards.  I call it the EBQ or empty billboard quotient.  See businesses that pay 5 to 8 thousand a month to rent those billboards don't or won't do so if they don't see it coming with a return on inverstment.  There are some new ones put out by the state of Indiana trying to lure businesses and people to move from Illinois.  they say simply ILLINOYED YET?   Tolls,  taxes,  corrupt government poster children everywhere.  Happiness will be Illinois in my rearview mirror soon and very soon.


metastar's picture

These cars are kept on somebody books at full value, so will not be sold at discount.

Where have we seen this before?

The Most Interesting Frog in the World's picture

PE will snap these up and rent to Serfs after next "crisis"...

1stepcloser's picture

So are homes in mark to magic world. Color u shocked I'm sure!

PT's picture

Will not OFFICIALLY be sold at discount.
Someone, somewhere has a headache from all these cars.  I'm quite sure that great bargains can be had, if only you find the right person and word your request carefully.  Remember:  otherwise they will be scrapped in order to create artificial scarcity and keep prices high.  Who does the scrapping?  Maybe he would be easier to work with.  I think licensing and rego will be the hard part.

Worth looking into for the right person in the right place.  And car dealers need to re-assess their business model.  Sure you might lose sales, but you weren't getting those sales anyway.  Once those cars are on the road, you'll get the servicing and maintenance business.  Isn't that better than nothing?   

1stepcloser's picture

This is just an Avis rental area for the latest ghost airport in china. Move along, move along

Platinum's picture

Mount solar panels on them. That's all I have.

mcgoverntm's picture

It costs the car companies to manufacture these cars - labor, materials, wear-and-tear on manufacturing facilities.  How can the companies survive this insanity other than with taxpayer bailouts?  The article states:

The car industry cannot stop making new cars because they would have to close their factories and lay off tens of thousands of employees.  This would further add to the recession.  Also the domino effect would be catastrophic as steel manufactures would not sell their steel. All the tens of thousands of places where car components are made would also be effected, indeed the world could come to a grinding halt.

However, how will the car companies pay their suppliers and workers if they do not realize any cashflow from these millions of cars?  Is the author suggesting that the car companies' strategy is rational or the best available?  Is someone other than the car companies' management dictating this strategy?  Is this the way that our comrade central planners avoid, however temporarily, the final collapse? 

JLee2027's picture

Even Government bailouts end. Not sure how long you stay in business and keep making things that no one is buying. At some point, it all stops. Has to.

Angus McHugepenis's picture

LoL... companies don't pay their employees... EBT & SNAP do. Just ask Wal-Mart how that works.

blindman's picture

just ship them to china and park them on the streets
of the cities with no people and then invite some
pets and people to care for the "capital".

Elliptico's picture

No worries.  The Fed has it covered.

NoDecaf's picture

All I could think of was the soviet command economic model, except there's nobody at this helm, it's on autopilot.

Tinky's picture

There's plenty of available parking in Belgium, from what I understand.

lotsoffun's picture

need someplace to store all the tsy's they bought.  stick them in the trunk for safe keeping.  those belgium guys are really smart.  take down so many tsy's cheap now.  rich tomorrow.