China ahead in car sales race for 10 consecutive years

0 Comment(s)Print E-mail China Daily, January 16, 2019
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Visitors are seen at the International Automobile Expo in Hangzhou, capital of east China's Zhejiang Province, Oct. 12, 2017. [Photo / Xinhua]

China ranked first among countries for auto production and sales for 10 consecutive years as of 2018, and the country's new energy vehicles continue to maintain rapid growth, according to the China Association of Automobile Manufactures.

Last year, production and sales volume for China's automobiles reached 27.81 million and 28.08 million units, down 4.16 percent and 2.76 percent year-on-year, respectively.

For passenger cars, production and sales registered at 23.53 million and 23.71 million units, a drop of 5.15 percent and 4.08 percent respectively compared with a year earlier; for commercial vehicles, the figures were 4.28 million and 4.37 million, up 1.69 percent and 5.05 percent respectively from the previous year.

The end of the preferential policy on auto purchase tax, macroeconomic growth rate slowdown and consumer confidence may be factors in sales missing expectations, yet China's auto industry still has room for growth. It has entered into the growth stage for high-end brands and high-quality development, according to analysis by CAAM.

Production and sales of new energy vehicles in China maintained rapid growth last year, which saw an increase of 59.92 percent and 61.74 percent year-on-year to 1.27 million and 1.26 million units, respectively.

Specifically, the production and sales of pure electric vehicles were 986,000 and 984,000 units respectively, up 47.9 percent and 50.8 percent year-on-year; for plug-in hybrids, the figures stood at 283,000 and 271,000, an increase of 122 percent and 118 percent respectively over the same period of the previous year; fuel cell vehicles saw 1,527 units in both production and sales.

Automobile exports in 2018 grew at a fast rate, experiencing an increase of 16.8 percent to 1.04 million units compared with the same period earlier.

Passenger car exports reached 758,000 units, up 18.5 percent year-on-year; commercial vehicle exports were 283,000 units, a year-on-year increase of 12.5 percent. Except for the fourth quarter, the monthly export volume of automobiles was higher than that of the previous year.

China's car sales will reach 28.1 million units in 2019, in line with the level in 2018, CAAM predicted. Passenger cars are expected to sell around 23.7 million units, the same as in 2018, while commercial vehicles sales will see a 1 percent increase year-on-year to about 4.4 million units.

New energy vehicles are expected to see a 30 percent increase in sales to about 1.6 million units in 2019, as estimated by CAAM, and automobile exports are predicted to reach the same level in 2018 - about 1 million units.

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