Small SUV Sales In Canada - January 2017

2017 Mazda CX-3 white.jpg
While Canadian sales of the most affordable subcompact crossovers saw their growth curtailed in January 2017, the increasingly high-volume compact SUV/crossover exploded with 20% growth in the first month of the year.

Canada SUV/Crossover Sales By Model - January 2017
Canada Vehicle Sales Rankings By Model - January 2017

Led by the new, fifth-gen, 2017 Honda CR-V that jumped 40% to 2851 units, the category's additional 3900 sales occurred with growth from nearly every nameplate in the category. 

The Chevrolet Equinox, Dodge Journey, GMC Terrain, Hyundai Tucson, discontinued Jeep Patriot, Kia Sportage, Mazda CX-5, Mitsubishi Outlander, and Nissan Rogue didn't just improve upon their January 2016 performances: they all reported double-digit percentage growth. 

Midsize SUV Sales In Canada - January 2017

2017 GMC Acadia black
Canadian sales of midsize SUVs and crossovers – a widely varying group described here as including vehicles as disparate as the Hyundai Santa Fe XL, Subaru Outback, and Jeep Wrangler – rose 1% in January 2017. 

Canada SUV/Crossover Sales By Model - January 2017
Canada Vehicle Sales Rankings By Model - January 2017

Sharp declines from the Buick Enclave, Jeep Grand Cherokee, Kia Sorento, and Nissan Murano were largely offset by big improvements from the Ford Explorer, Chevrolet Traverse, Dodge Durango, Mazda CX-9, and Toyota Highlander, among others. 

Large Luxury SUV Sales In Canada - January 2017

2017 Mercedes-Benz GLS63 AMG white
Despite the loss of one-third of its January sales, the Mercedes-Benz GLS-Class was Canada's top-selling full-size luxury SUV in January 2017.

Canada SUV/Crossover Sales By Model - January 2017
Canada Vehicle Sales Rankings By Model - January 2017

GLS volume fell 33% to 208 units, a 100-unit year-over-year drop. Cadillac Escalade sales rose 1% to 155 units. The Infiniti QX80, Land Rover Range Rover, and Lexus LX570 all posted big gains. Canadian sales of the Lincoln Navigator continue to fall as we approach the reveal, likely at the New York Auto Show, of a new Navigator. Mercedes-Benz G-Class volume also declined by a fifth in January.

Review: 2017 Honda CR-V Touring – It's Our Problem-Free Philosophy

2017 Honda CR-V Touring Molten Lava
I am not wowed. I do not stand here in awe. 

My mouth is not agape. My knees are not weak. My heart does not need to be stilled. 

+ Exemplary ride quality

+ Huge inside space
+ Very fuel efficient
+ Plenty of pep
+ Quiet cabin
– She ain't pretty
– Slow infotainment startup
– No available engine upgrade
– CVT only
– Annoying idle sounds
The Honda CR-V, even brand new as a 2017 model in its fifth-generation form, is not the kind of vehicle that can wow you; it doesn't have the potential to blow your mind.

It's not a CRX Si or a Civic Type R, let alone an S2000. If you want more power or three pedals or low-profile tires, look elsewhere. 

So my socks have not been knocked off. 

Yet rarely have we spent a week with a manufacturer-supplied test vehicle that induced such a high level of automotive contentment. In the same way in which a Mazda MX-5 Miata entirely fulfills its mission, the way most modern light-duty pickup trucks go above and beyond the call of duty, the way most minivans make life so easy, the 2017 Honda CR-V Touring is precisely what a Honda CR-V is supposed to be. 

At GCBC, we don't shy away from voicing our complaints. But in order to take issue with the all-new CR-V, one must search long and hard for problems. The search is largely fruitless.

Small And Midsize Luxury SUV Sales In Canada - January 2017

2017 Cadillac XT5 red
Canadian sales of luxury SUVs grew across multiple categories in January 2017. 

Subcompacts, led by the Mercedes-Benz GLA and its best month ever, jumped 51% thanks to gains from each contender. 

Canada SUV/Crossover Sales By Model - January 2017
Canada Vehicle Sales Rankings By Model - January 2017

Compacts, led by the Audi Q5, 2016's best-selling premium brand utility vehicle, jumped 27% to 3019 units, 6% of all Canadian utility vehicle sales. Up another rung in size and price, midsize luxury utilities rose 4% to nearly 3700 units because of improvements reported by the BMW X5 and X6, Land Rover Range Rover Sport, and Volvo XC90.

Small And Midsize Luxury Car Sales In Canada - January 2017

2016 Mercedes-Benz CLA-Class red
Despite a 5% drop in passenger car sales in January 2017, sales of many entry-luxury and small luxury sports sedans ticked up markedly last month.

Year-over-year, the Audi A3 and Audi A4, BMW 2-Series, Infiniti Q60, Lexus CT and Lexus IS, and Mercedes-Benz's B-Class, C-Class, and CLA-Class all improved. 

The Audi A4 added 377 sales to Audi's ledger, nearly tripling its January 2016 volume to 570 units in January 2017, good enough for the A4 to be Canada's second-best-selling luxury car last month. 

Sporty Car Sales In Canada - January 2017

2017 Dodge Challenger AWD
The Dodge Challenger was Canada's top-selling sports coupe in January 2017, but don't expect the muscle-bound, Canadian-built beast to remain on top for long.

January is far from the highest-volume month on the Canadian auto sales calendar. Indeed, it's the lowest-volume month. In 2016, only 3% of the Mustangs sold in Canada left dealers in January; slightly less than 3% of the Challenges. 

Thus, the fact that Dodge's venerable Challenger produced three more sales than the always-dominant Mustang in January does not mean the Challenger is on its way to a sales victory in 2017. The Mustang outsold the Challenger and Camaro combined last year.

However, it was prudent to expect that with a new all-wheel-drive option on the table, the Dodge Challenger could make real headway in the winter months.

Review: 2017 Chevrolet Cruze Hatchback Premier – A Good Car In Need Of A Good Powertrain

2017 Chevrolet Cruze Hatchback Premier
Month after month after month, Canadians are buying and leasing more SUVs than cars.

In recent weeks, the gap has spread. In January 2017, for example, Canadians acquired 1.5 utility vehicles for every car.

+ Hatch in the back

+ Quiet and refined
+ New, improved and nimble
+ Not a Civic/Elantra/Corolla
+ Looks good
– Dreadful throttle response
– Ride sometimes stiff on 18s
– $29K and no sunroof?
– MyLink is behind the times
– 1.4L often buzzy
And yet new car introductions continue at a healthy pace. And in the most hotly contested passenger car sector, compacts, the arrivals are frequent. 

There are new luxury sedans from Cadillac, Jaguar, Alfa Romeo, Lincoln, and Volvo: CT6, XE, Giulia, Continental, S90.

There are new sports cars from Fiat and Acura: 124 Spider and NSX.

There are new hybrid and electric cars from Hyundai, Chevrolet, and Kia: Ioniq, Bolt, Niro.

And there are new hatchback variants of established nameplates such as the Chevrolet Cruze. With the car sector's share of the market rapidly shrinking, with only three in ten new vehicle sales in January coming from the car sector, automakers aren't giving up. 

2016 was not a year to remember for the Chevrolet Cruze. Will the addition of a practical bodystyle bring new life to GM's compact car?