Richmond Hill, Ontario – Canadian new-vehicle sales increased by only 0.6 per cent  in May when compared to May 2009, according to industry analyst Dennis DesRosiers. While light truck sales actually rose by 13.4 per cent year-over-year, they were offset by a drop of 10.3 per cent in passenger car sales.

“The proper way to look at sales is to take a longer-term view,” DesRosiers said. The SAAR (seasonally adjusted annual rate) for May was 1.45 million units, “atrociously low by any measure and much worse than the 0.6 per cent increase that the raw numbers indicated. It is now coming up on a year where sales have been tracking on a SAAR basis in the 1.5 million range.”

DesRosiers said he couldn’t explain May sales being so weak. “We have been saying all along that sales have been lean for some nine or ten months, but nobody would have predicted that May would be this bad, especially on a SAAR basis.” DesRosiers said that Canadians significantly over-bought vehicles for most of the last decade, and with the average vehicle bought in the last five to eight years lasting to 15 or possibly 25 years, and to 350,000 to 400,000 km, “the fundamental need for a new vehicle is weak and unlikely to strengthen for quite some time.”

Sales were as follows:

Manufacturer May 2010 May 2009 % change
       
Chrysler 20,861 13,593 +53.5
Ford 26,110 21,873 +19.4
General Motors 25,995 31,546 -17.6
       
Acura  1,503  1,578 – 4.8
Audi  1,226  1,081 +13.4
BMW  2,361  2,676 -11.8
Honda 10,084 14,046 -28.2
Hyundai 12,620 11,204 +12.6
Infiniti    745    718 + 3.8
Jaguar     69     92 -25.0
Kia  5,731  5,032 +13.9
Land Rover    226    174 +29.9
Lexus  1,418  1,587 -10.6
Mazda  8,051  8,009 + 0.5
Mercedes-Benz  2,865  2,344 +22.2
Mini    502    552 – 9.1
Mitsubishi  1,810  1,931 – 6.3
Nissan  7,487  7,672 – 2.4
Porsche    193    161 +19.9
Saab      0     65 -100.0
Smart    244    178 +37.1
Subaru  2,436  1,940 +25.6
Suzuki    700  1,255 -44.2
Toyota 16,461 19,729 -16.6
Volkswagen  4,587  4,209 + 9.0
Volvo    642    773 -16.9
       
Total 154,927 154,018 + 0.6
Passenger Car  74,572  83,181 -10.3
Light Truck  80,355  70,837 +13.4

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