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Ford takes over top spot in Canada

FORD Motor Co of Canada Ltd has claimed the top spot in Canadian vehicle sales in June for the first time in 50 years, the company reported on Thursday.

Ford Canada said it sold 27,408 vehicles in June, as it posted a 25 percent increase over the same month of 2008.

"Consumers are drawn to the quality, design and value of our vehicles and we're going to keep the momentum growing with great offers this summer," Ford Canada's President and Chief Executive, David Mondragon, said in a statement.

The increase came in a month when General Motors Corp sought bankruptcy protection in the United States and Chrysler Canada Inc dealers were short of vehicles because Chrysler's North American plants were shut as it also went through a bankruptcy process in the US.

Ford sold more than 5,000 units ahead of perennial market leader General Motors, whose sales were 31 percent below a year ago.

"Our June performance reflects the overall softness in Canadian auto sales, but the Canadian-built Chevrolet Impala had a strong month increasing sales by 30.2 percent," said Marc Comeau, GM of Canada's vice president of sales, service and marketing.

Chrysler Canada's sales fell a whopping 58 percent to just 9,200 vehicles, as large-volume fleet sales fell due to the temporary shutdown of the company's North American plants while the company's parent restructured.

Toyota-branded sales volume dropped 18 percent to 17,198 in June compared with 20,871 a year ago.

However, Toyota said it was the company's best June ever for sales of its trucks. The Canadian arm of the Japanese auto maker said it sold 6,559 trucks last month.

DesRosiers Automotive reported that overall Canadian sales of cars and light trucks were down 13.2 percent in June, falling to 138,500 from 159,529 a year ago.


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