Believe it or not, Labor Day wasn’t always a time when you could drop by the auto mall for a new set of wheels. The holiday that celebrates U.S. workers rose to prominence in the late 1880s, a full decade before the first car dealership opened its doors. For those who wanted a good haggle, the local carriage repository would have to suffice. Cut a deal, and you could celebrate afterward at the vaudeville show.
Horsepower and YouTube have replaced horses and tuberculosis, but Labor Day lives on. And it’s one of the big weekends for auto sales, driving 3 percent of sales for the entire year, J.D. Power noted on Monday. That comes amid big Labor Day discounts: “Typically speaking, it’s the largest increase from an overall [incentive] spend as far as holidays are concerned,” said Chris Li, a forecasting expert at the firm.