Allegedly, auto sales in China are in trouble, if we listen to the pundits. Chinese cities may enact curbs on cars sales, but Shanghai and Beijing are just 40 million out of 1.3 billion, and rules in China are elastic. Defying popular wisdom, the world’s largest auto market shows signs of acceleration.
After a strong finish last year, all indicators say that a likewise strong January followed.
GM announced that its January sales rose 12 percent compared to the same month in the year before. GM has proven to be a good leading indicator for the Chinese market.
Volkswagen, now China’s largest automaker by volume, booked an increase of 13.9 percent for the month. Other automakers report likewise strong sales.
China sales of Toyota were up 18%, Honda’s increased 33% , those of Nissan fell 0.8 percent.
China is where the tight race for World’s Largest Automaker will be decided. The country is the largest single market both for GM and Volkswagen. It is worth keeping an eye on. Official data for January will take a little longer as China is on its Lunar New Year holidays. Expect increases of around 12 – 15 percent.