By Tom Davis
Toronto, Ontario -- December 13, 2017 -- The number of new vehicles sold in Canada in November dipped compared with the same month last year, but the industry is still on pace to top 2 million for the full year for the first time ever in automotive history.
Scotiabank's Global Auto Report found light trucks continue to be the source of strength in Canada, with nearly all manufacturers reporting year-over-year sales gains. Sales for 2016 amounted to a record 1.95 million.
The total for 2017 so far came as total light vehicle sales fell 1.2 percent to 158,653 in November, compared with 160,573 in the same month of 2016.
The number of new vehicles being sold is likely to affect the future of collision repair, with technology driving up repair costs. Technology such as parking assist sensors, wave radar systems, front-end and rear-end cameras, as well as more elaborate front lamp systems are adding, on a simple average vehicle, 23% to the repair cost compared to the prior generation of vehicles, claims a new report from Mitchell International.
The US, meanwhile, recorded stronger than expected vehicle sales, which has reduced inventories on dealer lots and set the stage for a rebound in US auto production from the lag experienced over the summer. The auto industry's latest production schedule calls for US motor vehicle assemblies to climb to an annualized 11.2 million units in the final months of 2017, up from only 10.5 million between July and September.
“The advance in US sales since September to the highest level since 2005 has set the stage for a rebound in production," said Carlos Gomes, Senior Economist and Auto Industry Specialist at Scotiabank. "This boost in industrial activity will likely be the largest contribution from the auto sector since late 2013.”
Other highlights from the report included:
- Sales continue to rise in Western Europe, advancing 4.6 percent year-on-year with five countries reporting double-digit sales gains in October, up from an average of four per month since April.
- Purchases continue to gain momentum in both Eastern Europe and South America, climbing year-over-year in October by 17 percent and 32 percent respectively.
- South America's gain in sales is the largest year-over-year increase since April 2013.
- Vehicle production in South America has jumped more than 20 percent this year and a further double-digit increase is likely in 2018.
- New orders for vehicles built in Germany and Spain have increased more than 6 percent year-on-year in the 12-months through September.
More information can be found on Scotiabank's full report here.