September auto sales fall, but Chrysler up

Mon Oct 3, 2011 11:03pm EDT
 
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TORONTO (Reuters) - Canadian auto sales fell in September, extending a volatile year with Chrysler's strong performance the lone bright spot among the top manufacturers.

Sales at the Canadian arms of Ford Motor Co, General Motors, Honda and Toyota all retreated in September from the levels of a year earlier, when the market was struggling to rebound from the 2009 recession.

Sales in the Canadian market eased 0.4 percent in September, and are up a meager 1.5 percent year-to-date, according to independent auto analyst Dennis DesRosiers.

"A tough month and a worrisome month for the industry as the market just refuses to grow," he said in a note.

GM of Canada said its overall sales fell 6.1 percent from last September to 16,799 vehicles. The company did not specify in which models sales declined.

Ford was once again the country's top seller, even though its combined car and truck sales fell 3 percent from the same month last year to 25,656. Ford's car sales rose 14.4 percent to 5,667, while truck sales fell 7 percent to 19,989.

"We were up against an unusually strong September last year. The fact that our car sales continue to improve shows that our investment in smaller, more fuel-efficient vehicles is paying off," Ford Canada Chief Executive David Mondragon said in a release.

Sales at Honda Canada dropped as a shortage of components for its new Civic dogged the unit of the Japanese-based automaker. The shortage began as a result of the devastating earthquake and tsunami that struck Japan in March.

Honda sales were down 19 percent at 11,109.   Continued...

 
<p>The new Ford Flex is seen on the assembly line at the company's Oakville Plant June 3, 2008. REUTERS/Fred Thornhill</p>