Thursday, February 17, 2011

New auto sales drop in December

Sales of new automobiles dropped in December, as the truck-buying spree of the previous month lost momentum, Statistics Canada reported.

Sales dropped 4.8% to 128,210 units, with the sale of trucks dropping almost 7% to 69,998 units, it said. The sale of passenger cars dropped for a second month, declining 2.2% to 58,212 units.

For the whole of 2010, new motor vehicle sales jumped 6.7%, as an 18.4% gain in truck sales outweighed a 4.8% drop in car sales.

Last year was a bumper year for Canadian truck sales, accounting for 55% of all vehicles sold. It was the first time since records began in 1946 that trucks outstripped passenger car sales.

In December, sales of North American cars declined 3.6%, while overseas-built vehicles fared better, declining just 0.3%.

Statistics Canada said preliminary data for January points to a renewed uptick in auto sales, with a gain of 3%.

In December, sales dropped across all provinces, led by Ontario.


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