Foreign automakers see their sales rebound strongly in China
Global Times

Workers check cars at a factory of the First Automotive Works (FAW) Group Co., Ltd. in Changchun, capital of northeast China's Jilin Province, Sept. 23, 2020. (Photo: Xinhua)

Foreign automakers are seeing strong momentum in vehicle sales in the Chinese market, which grew 7.4 percent in September as China's economy recovers from the COVID-19 pandemic.

Sales of passenger cars in China grew 7.4 percent in September, as the world's biggest auto market recovers from the coronavirus. The rapid recovery of the Chinese market is expected to revive the downturn in revenues for many foreign automakers based in China, analysts say.

Retail sales of passenger vehicles in China hit 1.91 million units in September, keeping the highest growth rate of the past two years for three consecutive months, according to data released by the China Passenger Car Association (CPCA) on Tuesday.

The growth was accompanied by a 99.6 percent rise in sales of new energy vehicles in September as compared with a year before, and it is up 24.1 percent from August.

The strength in sales has been boosted by China's continued economic recovery from COVID-19, Feng Shiming, an independent car analyst, told the Global Times on Tuesday.

"The extended 8-day national day holiday has seen rising demands for reunions, traveling, and getting married, which all stimulated demand for car purchases in September," Feng said.

In September, Tesla China hit 11,329 units, ranking third among the top three new energy vehicle companies in terms of sales.

On Tuesday, Tesla announced it would reduce the price of its imported Model S long-range plus version and high-performance version by 23,000 yuan ($3,413) following recent price cuts, according to its official website.

General Motors (GM) said on Monday that its Chinese sales rose 12 percent year-on-year for the third quarter, which marks the auto maker's first quarterly sales growth in China in two years.

The second-largest foreign auto maker in China said that it delivered 771,400 vehicles from July to September.

Changan Ford also revealed its total wholesale volume, which reached 27,700 units in September, an increase of 32.6 percent year-on-year.

"The Chinese market offers an opportunity for foreign auto companies to revive their fortunes", said Feng. "The strong consumer demand in the Chinese market is expected to make up for the downturn in the European and US markets," Feng added.

Foreign auto companies such as GM and Ford have also been at pains to promote their electric models to better cater to the Chinese market, Feng added.

Looking forward, the CPCA expects China's passenger vehicle market to continue to boom throughout October as confidence in China's continued economic recovery grows in the fourth quarter.