New Car Sales in Canada Fell 20 Percent in 2020

The Canadian auto industry came out of 2020 with a performance that was better than expected considering the COVID-19 pandemic. For sure, it wasn’t affected as much as other sectors like tourism, hospitality, aviation.

New vehicle sales in the country amounted to 1,553,555 units, a drop of 20 percent from the 1,942,717 vehicles sold in the previous year according to the Automotive News Data Center.

It’s the second biggest percentage decline on record, right behind the 22.7-percent loss of 1982 based on data from DesRosiers Automotive Consultants.

Sales fell 48.3 percent in March and a whopping 74.6 percent in April as the first wave of COVID-19 forced car dealers to close their showrooms and turn to online transactions.

Photo: Maserati Canada

Things improved significantly in the second half of the year, with a drop of just 3.9 percent in the third quarter and 5.7 percent in the fourth quarter.

Only one car brand managed to increase its Canadian sales, namely Cadillac (4.2 percent). Others that fared the best in 2020 include Genesis (-4.1 percent), Kia (-5.5 percent), Alfa Romeo (-6.2 percent), Buick (-7.1 percent), Volvo (-9.3 percent), Subaru (-9.4 percent), GMC (-9.8 percent), Mazda (-13 percent) and Ram (-13.9 percent).

On the other hand, several makes posted huge loses last year, led by Infiniti (-47.3 percent), Chrysler (-43.5 percent), Tesla (-43.2 percent), Jaguar (-41 percent), Fiat (-40.6 percent), Mitsubishi (-37 percent), Nissan (-33.2 percent) and BMW (-30.5 percent). And we’re not even talking about exotic brands like Lamborghini and McLaren.

One thing didn’t change: the Ford F-150 was the overall sales leader for the 11th year in a row. We will soon post the top 10 best-selling cars and trucks in Canada in 2020, so don’t miss it!

Photo: Ford
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