What Global Recession? – Chinese auto sales hit 5 million in first half of 08

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Global fears of a world wide recession, and rising oil prices have not put a dent in Chinese automobile sales over the past 6 months, with sales of just less than 1 million cars each month. Also, the figure quoted does not include imported cars, but rather is for domestically made vehicles only.

China Daily gives us the low down:

China was expected to sell a record 5 million domestically-made automobiles in the first six months, the latest figure released by the China Association of Automobile Manufacturers showed.

The figure was generally in line with the association’s forecast, based on the fact that about 4.5 million homemade autos were produced and sold in the first five months of 2008.

The production and sales volume rose 17.05 percent and 18.91 percent year on year respectively.

Of the total, the country produced 3.04 million and sold 3.02 million passenger vehicles during the period, up 16.33 percent and 17.41 percent from last year.

The production and sales of commercial vehicles hit 1.31 million and 1.32 million, a rise of 18.75 percent and 22.48 percent.

The top-10 domestic producers, including Shanghai Automotive Industry Corporation (SAIC), First Automobile Works (FAW) and Dongfeng Motors had 84.19 percent of the total sales.

Chery and Geely, two car makers widely regarded as flag-bearers of Chinese homegrown brands,ranked seventh and tenth respectively.


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  • M0L0TOV
    June 11, 2008

    Hate to play the devil’s advocate but you’re dealing with a country that has a very large population (thus large customer base). I’m not trying to bust your chops Ash but you’re comparing apples to oranges. When you have a large population, even if the economy was slow, they still consume a massive amount of goods and services. It’s like saying if North and South America were one country and automobile sales were over x-million sales of vehicles. Luckily your petrol prices are heavily subsidized.

  • Ash
    June 11, 2008

    MOLOTOV – you have a point, it could be that US car sales have hit a peak, many people already have a car where as China most people are just buying their first car, hence the massive market to fill.

    On the other hand, it shows that Chinese are not feeling the global pinch just yet. Despite the stock market diving, the price of everyday goods skyrocketing, the Chinese still appear to have a fair amount of liquid cash that they can spend on high ticket items, such as cars!

  • charlie
    June 12, 2008

    so chinese car sales are running at about 500K “domestically” produced a month.

    US car sales are running about 600K a month. Light truck sales are at about 500K (that includes pickups and SUVs)

    US is in a recession, credit is hard to get, that is why vehicle sales are down. China is NOT in a recession.


    1. how many cars in china are purchased on credit
    2. do chinese numbers include light trucks/SUVs
    3. what about imported cars/trucks?

  • Bin Laden
    June 12, 2008

    Let’s see US has approx 300 million citizens (not including illegals) and China is a country of how many? So what is the ratio of cars sold to the total population? AND what the numbers in China be if the consumer had to buy cars with 12 airbags, computer anti-lock brakes, mandated government air regs and crash test requirements? Mmmmmmmm? There’s a reason why there aren’t any Chinese cars (except for a couple of Mao’s BJ’s running around…With alternate power plants under the hoods mind you). That all said the numbers are like comparing our solar system to the galaxy. SMALL. Now if you guys could make the cars go BOOM a little bit better my associates and I would be very interested in exporting them to the mideast.
    sincerly yours, “Achmed the dead terrorist”

    July 27, 2009

    the Economic Recession has been pretty hard on us. some of my friends lost their job because of the massive job cuts. i just hope that our economy becomes better in the following years.

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