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deals of the week

Canadians are buying cars and light trucks as if they were making up for lost time. As it turns out, notes Dennis DesRosiers of DesRosiers Automotive Consultants, they just might be.

For years and years, even decades, Canadians have been careful with vehicle purchases for a long list of reasons, suggests the auto analyst, pointing to the economic calamity of 2009-2010 as just one of many factors that have held Canadians car buyers in check. DesRosiers also points to such confidence-shaking developments as the threat of Quebec separation, volatile oil prices, fears associated with government debts and deficits, 9/11 and more.

"Canadians by their very nature are a conservative lot and we would argue that this long list of events turned Canadians into an even more conservative lot when it came to their vehicle purchases," he notes in recent observations to clients.

We're not so conservative any longer, however. Canadians are now racing to dealerships, snapping up new rides at record rates. Indeed, as DesRosiers points out, five times this year Canadians have set monthly sales records and the market is heading for an all-time level for sales this year, coming off a record 2013.

DesRosiers believes Canadians will continue to buy plenty of new vehicles for at least the next two to three years, perhaps longer – perhaps right to the end of this decade.

Certainly the basic economic conditions look to be in place to sustain strong vehicles sales in Canada. The U.S. economy is strengthening, and this traditionally is good news for wealth creation and employment in Canada – both of which impact on new vehicle sales.

DesRosiers also sees plenty of pent-up demand for new rides in Canada. The vehicle fleet in Canada is aging and current and future sales are being driven as those vehicles are replaced. Some buyers will opt for a used vehicle, but the number of good, affordable youngish and middle-age vehicles is underwhelming.

That and other factors are pushing many Canadians into new vehicles. The fact is, the sheer number of new models presents an appeal all its own. Add to that the improved fuel efficiency of new vehicles that has its own attraction in a time of high fuel prices and increasing interest in "green" technologies.

And then there are the deals which are reeling in a great number of buyers who might otherwise have gone the used vehicle route.

"And all of these criteria are NOT available to a consumer if they buy used – no longer-term financing, prime plus interest rates, less fuel efficiency and no incentives. We are thus seeing many 'used' vehicle intenders convert to a new vehicle sale," notes DesRosiers.

Deals, then, are a major part of the explanation for why new vehicle sales are hot and should remain hot for some time to come. Here are four that should interest quite a number of buyers.

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Deals of the Week consulted with unhaggle.com, Car Help Canada, carcostcanada.com, and other sources on these offers. As usual, pricing information here is subject to change and dealer discounts vary, so consult your dealer for the final details, including expiry dates for all offers.

2015 Chrysler 200 4 door Sedan C AWD

  • MSRP: $32,495
  • Freight, dealer prep, air conditioning tax: $1,830
  • Dealer discount (estimated): $1,200
  • Factory discount: $3,000 (manufacturer incentive)
  • Taxable subtotal: $30,125
  • Total price with 13% HST: $34,041.25
  • All incentives available with 3.99% financing for 48, 60 or 84 months.

2014 Honda CR-V EX-L AWD Honda Honda  

2014 Honda CR-V 4WD EX-L

  • MSRP: $33,550
  • Freight, dealer prep, fees and air conditioning tax: $1,830
  • Dealer discount (estimated): $1,500
  • Factory discount: $2,500 (manufacturer incentive)
  • Taxable subtotal: $31,380
  • Total price with 13% HST: $35,459.40
  • Factory cash incentives not available with 0.99% for 48 months or 1.99% financing for 60 or 84 months. Factory cash not available with a 1.99% lease rate for 48 or 60 months.

2015 Audi A5 2 door Coupe Auto Technik

  • MSRP: $52,400
  • Freight, dealer prep, AC tax: $2,230
  • Dealer discount (estimated): $2,500
  • Factory discount: $1,500 (manufacturer incentive)
  • Factory discount: $1,000 (loyalty incentive)
  • Taxable subtotal: $49,630
  • Total price with 13% HST: $56,081.90
  • Factory incentives are available with 3.90% financing for 48 or 60 months or 4.90% for 84 months. Incentives also available with a 3.90% lease rate for 48 months.

2015 Hyundai Elantra 4 door Sedan Auto Limited

  • MSRP: $25,649
  • Freight, PDI, AC tax: $1,730
  • Dealer discount (estimated): $900
  • Factory discount: $2,500 (manufacturer incentive)
  • Taxable subtotal: $23,979
  • Total price with 13% HST: $27,096.27
  • A $1,500 factory cash incentive is available with 0.99% financing for 48, 60, or 84 months. A $2,000 factory incentive is available with a 2.99% lease rate for 48 months or a 3.99% lease rate for 60 months.

Pricing information source: unhaggle.com and carcostcanada.com. Calculations based on Ontario customers. Please note that while the information above is accurate at the time of publication, incentives are given at the discretion of individual dealers, and may be changed or discontinued at any time. Where noted, "dealer discounts" are negotiated with the customer on a case-by-case basis. Unhaggle Savings are actual discounts received by Unhaggle customers.

If you have questions about driving or car maintenance, please contact our experts at globedrive@globeandmail.com.

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