Vehicle sales posted biggest annual jump last year since 1997: DesRosiers

TORONTO — Auto sales jumped 11.8 per cent in 2023 compared with the year before as vehicle supply continued to improve, according to DesRosiers Automotive Consultants.

The report says it was the biggest year-over-year increase in sales since 1997.

DesRosiers says improved vehicle supply and pent-up demand from so-called lost sales during the pandemic in the second half of the year helped boost sales activity despite higher interest rates and economic worries.

Sales for the month of December also came in strong across all provinces with an increase of 10.7 per cent year-over-year, marking 14 consecutive months of growth, the report says.

DesRosiers adds the fourth quarter saw sales rise 17.2 per cent compared with the fourth quarter of 2022.

Andrew King, managing partner at DesRosiers, says sales of light trucks reached a record share of 85.8 per cent last year as consumers preferred bigger vehicles over passenger cars.