May 13, 2009

Canadian new-vehicle sales jump 6.3 pct

Canadian sales of new motor vehicles rose 6.3 percent, the largest amount in 14 months, led by an increase in truck purchases, the government said Wednesday.

The increase brought the number of sales in March to 122,194 units, Statistics Canada said

Preliminary industry data indicate the number of new motor vehicles sold in April was essentially unchanged from that of March, the agency said.

Sales of new trucks -- which include minivans, sport utility vehicles, light and heavy trucks, vans and buses -- were up 11 percent to 60,577 units. This rise more than offset February's truck-sales decline, the agency said.

Passenger car sales were up 2 percent to 61,617 units.

Auto sales have been increasing slowly for three months following strong declines at the end of 2008, the agency said.

Increased sales were recorded in all provinces, with Quebec posting a 10.4 percent rise, which accounted for about 45 percent of the national increase.

Ontario sales were up 5.8 percent, the third consecutive monthly gain. Alberta saw the small increase, at 1.8 percent.