Canadian dealers did it again, outselling the previous year for the fifth time in a row, hitting 2.03 million vehicles delivered in 2017. After the 1.3% drop in November, they finished the year strong with a 2.6% bump in December to 123,996 units.
Still car sales in Canada had a bumpy year, ending with a 9.4% dip in December, down to 32,546 units from like-2016’s 43,512. Toyota, down 5.9%, was able to keep the No.1 spot from Honda for the second month in a row with Honda plummeting 37.4% and dropping to the No.3 slot. Hyundai swept into second place with a 29.6% gain in sales, mainly from the Elantra.
For the year, car sales totaled 635,347 compared with prior-year’s 659,475, a 3.7% decrease. Despite a rocky December, Honda wrapped up the year up in the No.1 spot with a mere 0.1% gain in sales and 14.8% market share. Toyota finished in second place, holding 13.8% share but overall down 1.3% for the year. Hyundai finished with a strong December, but that wasn’t enough to close the 13.1% year-to-date gap, down to 71,352 units compared with year-ago 82,110.
Despite inconsistent car sales, light-truck deliveries continued to grow, as December marked the 14th consecutive month of year-over-year gains, a 7.6% increase to 91,450 units. Fiat-Chrysler and General Motors were neck-and-neck in December, with FCA ultimately clinching the No.1 spot with 17.8% market share compared to GM’s 17.7% despite an incredible 32.5% gain.
Even though Ford came in third in December with a 4.5% drop in light-truck sales, it finished No.1 for the year, up 4.5% to 265,542 units. FCA was runner-up with 247,685 units, a 3.6% drop compared to 2016. Light-truck sales hit nearly 1.4 million, an 8.6% increase compared to like-2016’s 1.29 million, marking the eighth consecutive year of gains.
Canadian dealers sold a record 2,034,288 new light vehicles in 2017, a 4.4% gain over the prior peak of 1,947,674 set just a year earlier. The string of record-setting years started in 2013 when 1,740,887 light vehicles were delivered.
Ford closed 2017 in the top spot overall, just 0.1% ahead of second-place GM. GM closed the gap from 33,453 units at the end of ’16 compared to a mere 339 for ’17. Third place FCA ended the year down 4.2%, the only automaker in the top five to come in below year-ago. Toyota and Honda posted year-end gains of 3.1% and 5.7%, respectively.