Richmond Hill, Ontario – New-vehicle sales in Canada rose 6.2 per cent in January 2010 when compared with January 2008, but the sector is not yet back on track, according to industry analyst Dennis DesRosiers.

The seasonally adjusted annual rate (SAAR) for January was down from December “and beginning to track month in and month out at below 1.5 million units,” DesRosiers said. “If this were to hold, it would be very bad news for the automotive sector in Canada.”

DesRosiers also warned that the 6.2 per cent rise for the month was compared to a very weak period in 2008, and said that he expected better numbers. “A year ago, the January sales were down by about 25 per cent and the lowest sales in a decade, so most believed that this January would be back to more normal sales levels for this time of year,” he said, with sales expected in the 90,000 to 110,000 level. “But at least sales were up slightly and January is the lowest absolute sales month each year, so you can’t read too much into this early market performance. March to June are the make-or-break months.”

Sales for January were as follows:

Manufacturer Jan 2009 Jan 2008 % change
       
Chrysler 11,847 11,170 +  6.1     
General Motors 14,817 14,147 +  4.7
Ford 11,540 10,901 +  5.9
       
Audi 884    388  +127.8
BMW/Mini 1,198     968  + 23.8
Honda/Acura 6,393 7,559  – 15.4
Hyundai 6,084 4,607  + 32.1
Jaguar 35       40  – 12.5
Kia 2,416 1,825  + 32.4
Land Rover 175     145  + 20.7
Mazda 4,171 4,150  +  0.5
Mercedes-Benz 1,693 1,268  + 33.5
Mitsubishi 1,087 1,099  –  1.1
Nissan/Infiniti 4,975 4,259  + 16.8
Porsche 94        88  +  6.8
Subaru 1,729 1,186  + 45.8
Suzuki 516      602  – 14.3
Toyota/Lexus 9,199 10,269  – 10.4
Volkswagen 2,332 1,893  + 23.2
       
Total 81,581 76,850  +  6.2

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