After the spring’s quick development, Ford’s first-quarter struggles, in which the all-conquering F-Series only outsold the No. 2 Ram by a narrow three-unit margin, are quickly becoming a distant memory. Ford sold 32,222 more full-size pickups between April and June than it did between January and March, an increase of 77%. That was sufficient for the F-Series to outsell the Ram by about 13,000 units in the second quarter.
Ford’s tale is not limited to the F-Series, despite the fact that it has contributed to roughly half of the company’s sales so far this year. In total, Blue Oval sales increased by more than 9% during the spring thanks to the F-Series as well as a doubling of Edge volume, an increase in Escape volume of 8%, and an increase in Bronco Sport volume of 36%.
Toyota is accelerating forward with an increasing emphasis on hybrid and electric vehicles while being firmly anchored in second place with a 53 percent lead over Hyundai and a 3,100 monthly sales loss compared to Ford. More than a quarter of the volume produced by Toyota and Lexus now comes from so-called “electrified” vehicles (Toyota’s 92,288 sales don’t include another 12,115 from Lexus). These include hybrid and plug-in vehicles, as well as the bZ4x electric crossover.
In the first half of 2022, 8 percent of all new cars sold in Canada were Hyundais, up from 7.3 percent the previous year, as the company overtakes rival brands Honda, Mazda, Nissan, and Hyundai’s Kia to gain market share and top rankings. Hyundai is performing well, and the Genesis division of the company is also doing well. Sales increased by 57 percent to 2,725 units in the first half of 2022, much below the levels of Benz-BMW-Audi but stronger than Land Rover and only barely below Infiniti.
The Chevrolet Equinox, the Terrain’s sibling, is currently experiencing a significant post-shutdown rebound with a 31-percent year-over-year growth in the first half of 2022. This is similar to how GMC profited from increased Terrain sales. (Sales of the Equinox increased by 41% in Q2). Chevrolet, like GMC, is still primarily a pickup truck brand. Between January and June, 54,125 Chevrolets were sold in Canada, and 57 percent of those were trucks.
Honda’s nearly one-third fall in auto sales is the worst among top-tier brands, despite being generally fairly capable of securing a podium spot as one of Canada’s top 3 brands. Only Buick (down 41%), Land Rover (down 52%), and Jaguar (down 64%) experienced more severe annual losses. Every carmaker is trying to produce enough cars, but Honda’s situation is made more difficult in 2022 by significant model changes: the HR-V and the Canadian-built CR-V are both going through significant generational changes.
A strong Pathfinder is beneficial. The new Frontier has returned with a bang after a brief break. Additionally, sales of the Altima, Sentra, and Qashqai are up this year compared to previous. However, a sharp decline in Rogue sales at Nissan devalues the entire brand. The Rogue is selling 8,455 fewer units than it did last year, a 47 percent decline. Although it still tops the Kicks’ 8,401 units in sales (albeit by a narrow margin), its decrease is the main cause of Nissan’s 23 percent Q2 loss and 18 percent first-half decline.
If Kia’s decline at roughly double the industry average’s rate isn’t aggravating enough, the company must be furious that Hyundai, Kia’s business partner, is absorbing market share as Kia loses it. The brand’s Q2 Canadian market share has decreased by nearly a full percentage point to 4.3 percent compared to the first half of 2020, when Kia made quick progress right through the pandemic’s early phases.
Don’t worry about the rising cost of petrol; GMC’s full-size Yukon and Yukon XL SUV sales are up 5% so far this year. Of course, that SUV pair only makes up a minor portion of GMC, which is primarily made up of the Sierra pickup. GMC sold 43,919 units in total, 27,063 of which were Sierras, whose sales fell 18% in the first half of 2022. The Terrain, which has recovered from significant manufacturing slowdowns with a 70% year-over-year growth in 2022, is good news for GMC. With 7,492 sales, the Terrain is GMC’s second-best-selling car.