March 1, 2019 / 9:31 PM / 4 months ago

Canada auto sales drop 3.7 percent in February, truck sales rise

FILE PHOTO: Cars drive in heavy traffic on the Gardiner Expressway in Toronto, June 29, 2015. REUTERS/Mark Blinch

(Reuters) - Canada auto sales slipped for the eleventh straight month in February, falling 3.7 percent from a year earlier to 120,891 units, according to industry data released on Friday.

A report here released by Global Automakers Canada (GAC) said passenger car sales dropped 16 percent, while sales of trucks rose 1.2 percent, with the heavy goods vehicles representing nearly 75 percent of all sales in the month.

The results were not unexpected said GAC President David Adams in a statement, adding that both January and February last year were very strong in terms of sales.

“Also, when you factor in the significant snow and weather events that have occurred over the month of February across the country, the results are actually pretty good.”

Separately, General Motors Co said its total vehicle sales in Canada fell 9 percent to 16,350 vehicles in February.

Ford Motor Co’s Canada division reported total car sales of 2,057 and truck sales of 16,2014 in February, while total auto sales for Japanese automaker Toyota Motor Corp in Canada rose 1.4 percent in the same period with 13,419 units sold, according to the GAC report.

Total February auto sales for Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV, which is among the top four carmakers in Canada, fell 2 percent to 18,461 vehicles. Sales dropped 11 percent for its brand Jeep.

The company’s sales in the United States also dipped 2 percent, hurt by weak demand for Fiat 500 small city cars and Jeep Compass sport utility vehicles.

General Motors and Ford Motor, the top two U.S. automakers, have stopped reporting monthly auto sales numbers. Toyota Motor reported a 5.2 percent drop in U.S. sales to 172,748 vehicles due to declines in its flagship Camry sedan as well as its Tundra pickup trucks and Sienna minivans.

Reporting By Shanti S Nair and Shradha Singh in Bengaluru; Editing by James Emmanuel and Shinjini Ganguli

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