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Hyundai Elantra Sales up 26% According to Driving.ca!

2022-07-31

Cars picking up steam in Canada's auto market in early 2022

Author: Timothy Cain - www.driving.ca

As fuel prices crept towards $2.00/litre during the first quarter of 2022, a particularly comparable group of nine cars combined to produce a hugely significant chunk of extra market share.

Their similarities? Four doors, front and/or all-wheel drive, base prices at or below $30,000, efficient four-cylinder engines, and surging sales volume. Then there was the biggest similarity of all — they were available in sufficient numbers to generate more sales in 2022's first-quarter than during the same period one year ago.

The desire for improved fuel efficiency in a high-price fuel era may have no bearing on the matter. With dealers unable to build any kind of inventory whatsoever, simply being available is enough to spur big increases.

On the one hand, Canada's overall new vehicle market suffered a 12-per-cent year-over-year decline worth nearly 50,000 lost sales in Q1. The car market (excluding the nine cars we're discussing) plunged 26 per cent, a loss of more than 13,000 units in only three months. Car sales at BMW tumbled 36 per cent, Cadillac's cars were down 38 per cent, and even Toyota took a 30-per-cent hit. It gets worse: Volkswagen's car volume fell off a cliff, dropping 82 per cent, equivalent to almost 5,000 fewer sales.

In an environment like this, any improvement is noticeable. But these nine affordable, efficient, and at least somewhat available cars didn't merely produce a modest uptick; they turned 2021's first-quarter share of the car market — 21 per cent — into a 31-per-cent grab.

Who are they?

Mazda3: 3,072, up 16 per cent
Canadian sales of the Mazda 3 have been in steady decline for more than a decade. Over 50,000 3s were sold as recently as 2008. By 2015, Mazda was no longer able to sell 40,000 3s annually. By pre-pandemic 2019, Mazda Canada's total 3 volume was down to only 21,276 units. In other words, don't interpret 2022's first-quarter increase to mean the 3 is back. It's not, at least not at the level to which we were accustomed. But in an unhealthy market that has Toyota Corolla sales down 34 per cent and the Volkswagen Jetta down 86 per cent, the 3's 16-per-cent uptick is a welcome turnaround for Mazda.

Chevrolet Malibu: 873, up 16 per cent
While it's true General Motors is mostly out of the car business in North America, the company hasn't completely exited. Cadillac's still making a faltering go of it, and Chevrolet is still selling sports cars and, yes, even Malibus. In fact, nearly 60 per cent of the cars built by GM during the early part of 2022 were Malibus. Of Canadian midsize car sales in 2022's first-quarter, 16 per cent were Malibus, up from 11 per cent a year ago.

Subaru Impreza: 839, up 22 per cent
Rewind a decade. In 2012, what was Subaru Canada's best-selling car? The Impreza. At 11,212 units, the Impreza ended 2012 as Subaru Canada's best-selling car for the last time, generating over one-third of the company's sales. Now Subaru's top seller is the tall hatch spawned by the Impreza: the Crosstrek. The Impreza now accounts for fewer than 10 per cent of Subaru's sales, but in a lineup that (Impreza aside) is down 7 per cent, the Impreza's 2022 rise is particularly helpful.

Kia Forte: 2,997, up 23 per cent
Not a full-size SUV. Not a subcompact crossover. Not an in-demand minivan. Not a hyped-up electric. No, Kia's best-selling vehicle in 2022's first-quarter is the Forte, a compact sedan/hatch lineup. Kia Canada has added 551 Forte sales during the first three months of the year at a time when the brand's poorly-stocked SUVs are down by more than a fifth, a loss of more than 2,200 sales.

Hyundai Elantra: 5,869, up 26 per cent
Not since 2016 has the Hyundai Elantra ended a year as Canada's second-best-selling car. Yet through the first-quarter of 2022, that's where the Elantra stands: ahead of the Toyota Corolla but behind the Honda Civic. The seventh-gen Elantra was introduced for the 2021 model year. The styling may seem divisive, but that hasn't stopped the Elantra from grabbing heaps of extra market share.

Keep reading HERE!

Source: https://driving.ca/column/driving-by-numbers/driving-by-numbers-9-cars-picking-up-steam-in-canada-in-early-2022

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