New motor vehicle sales

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March 2011 (Previous release)

The number of new motor vehicles sold in March increased 2.0% to 135,261 units. Passenger car and truck sales were both up, led by stronger sales of North American-built cars.

 New motor vehicle sales up in March

Preliminary industry data indicate that the number of new motor vehicles sold in April decreased by 1%.

Overseas-built passenger car sales at their lowest point in six years

Passenger car sales rose 2.7% in March, a second consecutive month of gains. Sales of North American-built passenger cars accounted for the increase, rising 8.9%. North American-built passenger car sales have been rising since the middle of 2010.

Overseas-built passenger car sales declined 7.0%, reaching their lowest point in six years. Sales of overseas-built passenger cars have been declining since late 2010.

Sales of trucks (which include minivans, sport-utility vehicles, light and heavy trucks, vans and buses) increased 1.4% to 75,583 units in March, more than offsetting the losses reported in February.

 North American-built passenger car sales on the rise

Sales up in most provinces

The number of new motor vehicles sold increased in eight provinces in March, led by Alberta and Ontario.

Sales of new motor vehicles increased in Alberta and Ontario for the third consecutive month in March, rising by 4.2% and 1.4% respectively.

New Brunswick (+13.5%) reported the largest percentage sales increase in March, which more than erased losses reported in February.

Sales edged down in the region formed by British Columbia and the Territories (-0.2%), as well as in Newfoundland and Labrador (-0.3%).

Available on CANSIM: table 079-0003.

Definitions, data sources and methods: survey number 2402.

The March 2011 issue of New Motor Vehicle Sales (63-007-X, free) will be available soon.

Data on new motor vehicle sales for April will be released on June 14.

For more information or to order data, contact Client Services (toll-free 1-877-421-3067; 613-951-3549; To enquire about the concepts, methods or data quality of this release, contact John De Luca (613-951-8719), Distributive Trades Division.