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Canadian car sales post ‘gravity defying' rise

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CTV News Article

Canadian car sales post ‘gravity defying' rise

By Romina Maurino, The Canadian Press

TORONTO — Auto sales in Canada were up 5 per cent in July, with General Motors and Toyota posting increases despite high gas prices and pressure from a weak U.S. economy.

Passenger car sales were up 10.2 per cent, while light trucks were down 1.4 per cent, according to auto sales figures released by analyst Dennis DesRosiers.

General Motors Canada posted a 5.2 per cent increase, with dealers delivering 33,893 units in July, up from 32,205 a year ago.

Toyota Canada posted record sales in July, with 21,990 Toyota and Lexus cars and trucks purchased in July, up 18.3 per cent from the same month last year, boosted by fuel-efficient cars.

Chrysler, meanwhile, saw a slight decline of 7.6 per cent but was still up 2.4 per cent on the year, and Ford Canada sold 18,171 units in July, down from 21,097, with total truck sales off 12.2 per cent at 13,554 units and total car sales of 4,617 units mark.

Mr. DesRosiers called the sales increase “gravity defying,” saying the 2.7 per cent year-to-date rise comes “despite a recessionary quarter in Ontario, weakening employment numbers, a par dollar, a weakening energy sector out West.”

He attributed the increase to lower prices, which have been down in real terms all year somewhere in the three to five per cent range.

“Basic economics says that if you reduce the price of goods then consumers buy more – and buy more they certainly did in July and indeed most of the year,” he wrote in a commentary.

GM Canada parent General Motors Corp. posted a $15.5-billion (U.S.) second-quarter loss Friday, the third-worst quarterly performance in the company's nearly 100-year history. The Detroit-based auto maker is being hit by a drop in North American sales and expenses due to labour unrest and a massive restructuring plan.

The company also agreed to cash incentives of up to $120,000 (Canadian) for workers in a deal with the Canadian Auto Workers union this week to settle a grievance over the closure of an Ontario plant next year that will cut employment by 2,600 people.

“GM Canada's July sales continue to illustrate the ongoing shift toward cars and smaller crossovers and we have the vehicles and retail finance rates to satisfy that need,” said Marc Comeau, GM of Canada's vice-president of sales.

The Chevrolet Malibu, as well as the fuel-efficient Pontiac G6 and crossover vehicles GMC Acadia and Buick Enclave all had increased sales in July.

“When GM is up, the market is usually up since they are still the dominant seller in Canada by a wide margin,” Mr. DesRosiers said.

Still, as a group, GM, Ford and Chrysler were down 3.8 per cent while import brands were up 13.9 per cent. Import brands accounted for 53.7 per cent of the market in July, the single largest market share in any particular month in their history, Mr. DesRosiers said.

Honda Canada reported combined record July sales of 15,996 units by its Honda and Acura divisions, up 17 per cent. The auto maker said its Honda Automobile Division reported record July sales of 14,465 units, while the Acura division ended the month with sales of 1,531 units.

Nissan Canada, meanwhile, reported sales of 7,773 Nissan and Infiniti vehicles in July, an increase of 27 per cent over the same month last year. The Nissan brand accounted for 7,060 unit sales in July, while Infiniti sales totalled 713 units.

And Subaru Canada Inc. said its July sales totalled 2,002 units, up 62.2 per cent over the same period last year.

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"They are still the dominant seller in Canada by a wide margin".

That's right... we support GM more than the US does sometimes I believe. Anybody have a Canadian market share percentage? I bet it's higher than it is in the US...

Although on the flipside, I bet we buy less Fords and Chryslers than the Americans.

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Our Sales rankings go GM, Ford, Chrysler, Honda, Toyota in that order, descending order.

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Yeah, but Canadians are an odd breed, how else do you explain minivans being so popular or the Wave/G3?

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Our Sales rankings go GM, Ford, Chrysler, Honda, Toyota in that order, descending order.

Check again. Chrysler has been #2 for some time, and now Toyota is outselling Ford as well.

YTD Canadian sales: GM 222,526

Chrysler 145,828

Toyota 134,033

Ferd 131,420

I will agree with the comment that Canadians are a wierd lot. That is why Pontiac and GMC consistently outsell Chevrolet here. I don't understand why, but they do. The Uplander/SV6 outsell the Odyssey and Sienna here as well.

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The Uplander/SV6 outsell the Odyssey and Sienna here as well.

That can probably be explained by money. The Uplander/SV6 is $5000 less than the Sienna, based on a quick glance at each companies Canadian website. I dont know how GM does incentives in Canada, but I assume you can get an Uplander for significantly under sticker.

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Yes. In Canada, the American vans are much cheaper than the Japanese. Why so many people buy the GM vans as opposed to the Caravan however, is beyond me.

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That can probably be explained by money. The Uplander/SV6 is $5000 less than the Sienna, based on a quick glance at each companies Canadian website. I dont know how GM does incentives in Canada, but I assume you can get an Uplander for significantly under sticker.

Try $10k less than a Sienna. The Sienna is $30k +. Currently, the Uplander SWB is $17k and rumored to be dropping another $2-3k soon. :AH-HA_wink:

I would not put the Sienna/Odyssey in the same league as the Uplander, but for GAWD's sake it's cheaper than a HHR! If you've got 4 screaming brats and a mortgage, the Uplander is too good a deal to pass up.

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Check again. Chrysler has been #2 for some time, and now Toyota is outselling Ford as well.

YTD Canadian sales: GM 222,526

Chrysler 145,828

Toyota 134,033

Ferd 131,420

I will agree with the comment that Canadians are a wierd lot. That is why Pontiac and GMC consistently outsell Chevrolet here. I don't understand why, but they do. The Uplander/SV6 outsell the Odyssey and Sienna here as well.

So GM abandoning minivans seems like a bad move, at least in the CA market. Where are those potential sales going to go next year (isn't '08 the last year for the Uplander?).

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Most likely to the Caravan (starting at $20k) or other alternatives, maybe the Mazda 5?

You only need to look at the comparative prices of the products in Canada for the van prices to make sense. I mean, $17k for an Uplander is peanuts when you consider that the Cobalt starts at $15k.

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So GM abandoning minivans seems like a bad move, at least in the CA market. Where are those potential sales going to go next year (isn't '08 the last year for the Uplander?).

No. There will be a Canada only 2009 Uplander (basically a warmed over '08) and dealers are ordering 150+ of them to last us until 2nd quarter '09 when a minivan replacement is coming.

As I have stated before, GM should have reacted a little quicker with their hybrids and minivan replacement. We have been paying $5 a gallon for more than a year. The F-150 and Tahoe have never enjoyed the same relative sales in Canada as in the States. Everything costs more here, which is why the Cobalt and Uplander sell so well - value means a lot when you are paying the highest insurance rates in North Americe and 30% more for gas than our cousins across the border. What has happened in Canada years ago is now happening in the States. $4 a gallon is a distant memory around here.

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No. There will be a Canada only 2009 Uplander (basically a warmed over '08) and dealers are ordering 150+ of them to last us until 2nd quarter '09 when a minivan replacement is coming.

As I have stated before, GM should have reacted a little quicker with their hybrids and minivan replacement. We have been paying $5 a gallon for more than a year. The F-150 and Tahoe have never enjoyed the same relative sales in Canada as in the States. Everything costs more here, which is why the Cobalt and Uplander sell so well - value means a lot when you are paying the highest insurance rates in North Americe and 30% more for gas than our cousins across the border. What has happened in Canada years ago is now happening in the States. $4 a gallon is a distant memory around here.

This is the second time I've heard a references to a 'minivan replacement'...what is this? I haven't seen any mention of it anywhere else...not the Traverse? If it's coming in less than a year, I would have thought there would have been some buzz about it, or a car show unveiling...

Edited by moltar
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Try $10k less than a Sienna. The Sienna is $30k +. Currently, the Uplander SWB is $17k and rumored to be dropping another $2-3k soon. :AH-HA_wink:

I just pulled figured from GM Canada($24,390) and Toyota Canada($29,400).

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I just pulled figured from GM Canada($24,390) and Toyota Canada($29,400).

Incentive

the 24390 has been way discounted below MSRP... there are some base shorties going for 17500 at my local dealer.

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A 5% rise means that two Canadians bought cars last month! :P

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I just pulled figured from GM Canada($24,390) and Toyota Canada($29,400).

There is a $6,200 cash credit on the Uplander shorty. I just delivered a loaded one (tint, remote starter, cruise) for $20k, including our outrageous 13% combined taxes!

There were spy shots of the new minivan posted on a thread here a month or so back. GM told us at a meeting in February that this vehicle will be here by next summer at the latest.

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A 5% rise means that two Canadians bought cars last month! :P

:CanadaEmoticon:

C'mon, you're exaggerating: FIVE more Canadians bought cars last month.

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The Canadian markets eems to be doing better than the US market. I believe Chrysler posted another sales gain in Canada.

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The Canadian markets eems to be doing better than the US market. I believe Chrysler posted another sales gain in Canada.

Chrysler was down 7.6% in July; up 2.4% for the year. They are barely holding onto 2nd place in the sales race.

Ford is in free-fall here: down 13.8% for July; 5.4% for the year.

GM is holding onto 22% market share by its fingernails.

go to www.desrosiers.com and click on monthly sales.

Of course, those numbers are national. I am told that the Toronto area is down double digits, no doubt to all the job losses going on around here.

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Chrysler was down 7.6% in July; up 2.4% for the year. They are barely holding onto 2nd place in the sales race.

Ford is in free-fall here: down 13.8% for July; 5.4% for the year.

GM is holding onto 22% market share by its fingernails.

go to www.desrosiers.com and click on monthly sales.

Of course, those numbers are national. I am told that the Toronto area is down double digits, no doubt to all the job losses going on around here.

My bad, should have checked an actual source first. :P

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