Getting the Best Auto Insurance Deal During Canada’s Car Market Decline

Photo of author

( — October 1, 2020) — While the COVID-19 pandemic took a significant toll on health, it also profoundly affected the economy. People in Canada are feeling the damage from an economic slowdown, including lost jobs, lower wages, and fewer prospects. The purchasing power of individuals has taken a hit, and consumers are spending less during the crisis.  

This dip in sales activity is evident in Canada’s car market, which has fallen sharply since the pandemic began. Volatility defined car sales nationwide throughout 2020 so far. While the year started with consistent sales, the situation quickly changed. Bouts of big declines in sales figures, brief recoveries, and stagnation have been the story of recent months.  

No manufacturer or vehicle was spared the hammering the car market took during this year. For Canadians who buy a car during these times, finding one with an affordable car insurance premium is important.  

What are the country’s most popular cars? Which ones offer an affordable auto insurance premium in Ontario?Interestingly, the Kia Sorento is one of the best-selling cars in Canada and one of the cheapest to insure in Ontario during 2020. However, it is certainly not the only model worth checking out. So, read on to find out why car sales are declining, and which popular vehicles are the most affordable to insure.

Cars Sales Numbers in 2020 Are Defined by Volatility  

Before the COVID-19 pandemic, vehicle sales kept pace with previous years. January was a year-on-year (YoY) month of recovery as sales rose 0.5% from the same month in 2019. Many saw January as a sign Canada’s car market was bouncing back from two years of gradual decline.  

February cemented that sentiment with a 2.1% rise YoY. Sure, the rebound was looking like a gradual improvement rather than a steep jump, but it was progress nonetheless. And then coronavirus happened. 


As of September, the car sales industry has not recovered from its COVID slump. Sure, there were signs of improvement, especially during the summer when Canadians usually buy more cars. Sales were still down in June and July, but there were some signs of recovery. For example, in July, 165,020 vehicles were sold. By August, optimism made way for realism as the improvement plateaued.  

At the beginning of September, year-to-date vehicle sales in Canada reached 975,048, down 27.4% from 2019. It is also worth noting 2019 was also seen as a dire year for car sales, reflecting an already declining market.  

Why Did Car Sales Drop So Significantly? 

Like in most industries, the pandemic is a game-changer. No longer can analysts look at the car market in comparative terms. Using earlier years as a barometer became pointless as the inevitability of a significant slump in auto sales became apparent. It happened fast, too.  

In March, the market plunged 48% YoY and in April fell a massive 74.6%. By May, another 44% YoY drop made the message clear. Canadians were not buying vehicles. Worries arising from COVID, whether economic or health-related, took precedence as fewer people had money to spend on a new car.  

Canada’s Most Popular Vehicles and Car Insurance 

For consumers buying a car in Ontario, they are likely to turn to some of the country’s most popular options. As you may guess, sales for individual models are down sharply year-to-date. Among them are the ever-popular Honda Civic (-36.99%), the Toyota RAV4 (-25.85%), and the Hyundai Kona (-10.15%). 

Still, of Canada’s top 10 best-selling vehicles, some models are rebounding better than others. In August, only five vehicles had YoY increases. That includes Ontario’s Best-selling car, the Toyota RAV4, the only vehicle in the top five bestsellers to see sales rise compared to last year:  

 Does that mean you should run out and buy a RAV4? Sure, if you like the vehicle. However, if you seek an all-round package of vehicle affordability and low insurance costs, there are arguably better options. In fact, out of Canada’s top 10 best-selling cars, the RAV4 is the most expensive on average to insure.  

Interestingly, it is the Kia Sorento that is the most affordable to buy insurance for, on average. If obtaining an affordable insurance premium is your primary concern, the Sorento gives you the best chance.

The Hyundai Elantra is not a bad choice, either. It is Ontario’s seventh most popular car. It is also the eighth most affordable car on the market. But, it is the province’s ninth in terms of auto insurance affordability. 

Whether you buy an Elantra, a RAV4, Sorento or any other vehicle, finding the lowest insurance premium should be among your calculations. Though you are looking for the best policy to suit your insurance needs at the most affordable price,that does not mean choosing the cheapest deal, but instead, shop around to find a policy that delivers what you need at the best price possible.