TORONTO — Despite the sluggish economy, Canadians snapped up nearly 1.9 million new vehicles in 2015, making it a record year for Canadian auto sales.
Sales of new vehicles rose 2.5 per cent from the previous year to a total of 1.898 million, fuelled by demand for light trucks — a category that includes SUVs, minivans and pickup trucks.
Canadians bought nearly 1.2 million trucks in 2015, up 8.8 per cent from 2014, while sales of cars slipped 6.3 per cent to 715,719.
Source: Bank of Montreal (StatsCan data)
Experts cited a number of reasons for the strong sales, including the fact that prices of new vehicles have remained roughly the same for a number of years, while wages have risen.
That — along with lower gasoline prices and rock-bottom interest rates — have made cars and trucks more affordable for Canadians.
Fiat Chrysler Canada claimed the top spot for 2015 with sales of 293,061 vehicles, up 1.1 per cent from the previous year. That was slightly ahead of Ford Canada, whose annual sales were down 4.6 per cent at 278,437, while General Motors Canada saw its sales climb 5.4 per cent to 263,335.