According to the China Association of Automobile Manufacturers
(CAAM), total vehicle sales rose 13.4% to 1.8 million units in
Apr compared with 13.2% to 5.4 million units in the first quarter
of the year and 4.3% to 19.3 million vehicles in 2012.
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Passenger vehicle (cars, multipurpose and sport- utility
vehicles) sales rose 13.0% to 1.4 million units while commercial
vehicle sales scaled up 15% to 400,300 units in April. For the
first four months of the year, passenger vehicle sales rose 16.2%
to 5.9 million units while total vehicle sales escalated 13.2% to
7.3 million units, according to CAAM.
Auto sales in the world's largest market rose despite a fall in
economic growth to 7.7% in the first quarter of the year from
7.9% in the previous quarter. The growth can be attributable to
government-backed investments and easier bank finance.
Ford Motor Co.
) and its joint ventures in China posted an impressive 37.0% gain
in sales to 75,331 vehicles driven by strong demand for Ford
Focus and new Kuga models. Sales of Ford passenger car joint
venture, Changan Ford Automobile, soared 55.0% to 52,713
vehicles. Ford's commercial joint venture Jiangling Motors sold
20,731 units during the month.
Ford has embarked upon an aggressive expansion plan in China that
includes plans to triple its lineup in China by introducing 15
models, including the Kuga small sport utility vehicle by 2015.
Currently, the company sells seven models in the country. Ford's
General Motors Company
) and its Chinese joint venture partners sold 261,870 vehicles in
the month, up 15.3% from Apr 2012.
Japanese automakers continued to be the losers due to the
political conflict between Beijing and Tokyo over disputed
islands in the East China Sea. Sales of Japanese brands,
Toyota Motor Corp.
Honda Motor Co.
), fell 4.9% year-over-year during the month.
Nissan Motor Co.
) is the only automaker that depicted a 2.7% rise in sales to
102,800 vehicles in April, after a series of monthly declines.
Toyota and Honda reported a 6.5% and 2.4% decline in sales to
76,400 units and 60,596 units, respectively.
According to the Chinese government, total vehicle sales in China
are expected to rise 7.8% to 20.8 million vehicles in 2013 from
19.3 million last year, led by strong demand for passenger
vehicles and economic recovery. The CAAM believes SUVs will
remain the fastest- growing segment in the year while commercial
vehicles will record a moderate gain in sales.