Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Automakers Squeak-Out Cool Sales Gain Despite Chilly Canadian Weather

Photo Credit: Chris Nagy

The so-called Polar Vortex mixed up the Canadian automobile sales during the first month of 2014. A cold, snowy weather is believed to have kept car buyers at home in January from some dealerships while others posted modest gains.

According to Automotive News, a total of 95,639 vehicles were sold in Canada during January 2014. Compared to 2013, the start indicates a modest 0.3 percent growth. The overall sales results were influenced by a dip in car sales and a healthy rise in truck sales; not surprising based the weather affecting the country.

The winners in first month Canadian auto sales of 2014 is Chrysler, Toyota and Honda. Chrysler car and truck sales showed a healthy climb of roughly four percent apiece. The expanded Fiat brand in North America is proving to be well-received accounting for 596 vehicles (an 82 percent jump over January 2013). The Dodge Grand Caravan remains popular in Canada selling nine percent more examples than the previous start of the year.

Toyota's three brands of vehicles contributed to a 10.6 percent better Canadian sales start in 2014. Toyota saw 221 percent growth in the sale of their family-friendly, made in Canada RAV4 crossover (the Toyota RAV4 was redesigned in 2013 and was just being released last January). Also featuring a large vehicle manufacturing presence in Canada, Honda posted Canadian automotive sales 10 percent greater than 2013.

Suffering a difficult start to 2014 among Canadian consumers is Ford and General Motors. Ford's overall sales fell 10.3 percent to 14,533 vehicles. Despite the push to market the Focus, Fiesta and Fusion, F-Series pickup truck sales accounted for almost 81 percent of all Canadian vehicles sold in January 2014. General Motors' Canadian sales of 10,991 signaled a 20 percent drop compared to 2013. The Chevrolet Cruze have been slow sellers at dealerships with 42 percent fewer finding their way to Canadian drivers in January 2014 compared to the previous year.

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