Ford sees interest in hybrids amid strong Canadian sales

Chrysler and Ford both reported an increase in sales for June, as Canadian auto sales appeared set for another record year. But GM saw sales drop 15 per cent.

Canadian auto sales rise in June, except at GM

The Ford Fusion is one of the hybrid models that is helping Ford rebuild sales in Canada. (Ford/ Associated Press)

Chrysler and Ford both reported an increase in sales for June, as Canadian auto sales appeared set for another record year.

Canadians bought 175,428 new vehicles in June, compared with 171,608 a year earlier, a two per cent increase. Canadian sales were up four per cent last year, as buyers threw off the effects of the recession.

Ford reported an overall sales increase of seven per cent in June to 30,852 cars and trucks, including a 52 per cent increase in sales of hybrid models.

Sales of the Fiesta increased by 13 per cent, Fusion sales jumped eight per cent and Fusion Hybrid sales were up 19 per cent. Fusion and Fiesta are also top sellers for Ford in the American market, moving into territory that has been dominated by Toyota's Prius.

The SUV market also picked up, despite higher gas prices, with a 27 per cent increase in sales of Flex, 39 per cent increase of Escape and 13 per cent boost to Explorer in June.

Chrysler reported a three per cent increase in car and truck sales over the same month last year, saying it sold 27,013 vehicles last month, up from 26,222 in the year-ago period. The Jeep brand experienced a June sales record with 6,817 units sold, led by the sales of Jeep Wrangler.

Windsor-made minivan continues to sell

The Dodge Dart, which is now being built on an Alfa-Romeo chassis, enjoyed its best June sales to date with 1,064 units sold.

June was also a strong month for sales of the Dodge Grand Caravan and its sister product, the Chrysler Town & Country, both built in Windsor, Ont.. A combined total 5,420 of the minivans were sold, marking an increase of 5 per cent over June 2013.

GM was the laggard, hurt by the millions of recalls it has made since the beginning of the year. Sales were down 15 per cent compared with last year, to 21,007 vehicles in June.

Its Chevrolet Volt drew 6.5 per cent more buyers and Buick Encore sales were up 79 per cent on the month, while GMC Yukon sold 29 per cent more.

Infiniti, meanwhile, sold 759 units in Canada in June, an increase of 9.5 per cent, while Subaru Canada Inc. said its sales rose eight per cent over the same period last year, to 3,536 units.

Kia Canada Inc. sold 7,371 vehicles during the month, down five per cent from June 2013.


With files from the Canadian Press


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