Image credit: @dcmaster.
China overtook Europe in overall vehicle sales in 2012, making it the largest car market in the world. Sales of passenger vehicles increased by 6.8 percent from the previous year to 14.68 million units, according to the China Passenger Car Association.
European passenger vehicle sales in 2012 reached 12.5 million units, a drop of 1.1 million compared to the previous year. Analysts predicted that the Chinese vehicle market will continue to grow. Ferdinand Dudenhoeffer, head of vehicle research at the University of Duisburg-Essen, told German newspaper Sueddeutsche Zeitung that the Chinese market could soon surpass that of Europe and the US combined.
Rao Da, secretary-general of the China Passenger Car Association, predicts that as traffic congestion and environmental pollution become ever increasingly serious problems in Chinese cities, the government will probably take additional measures to slow vehicle sales. “If so, annual growth will be 5 percent.”
BMW said that its sales, including the Rolls-Royce and Mini brands, surged 40 percent from a year earlier to 326,444 units in 2012, backed by record monthly growth of 73 percent in December.
Volkswagen’s premium brand Audi also reported a 29.6 percent year-on-year growth in 2012 to a record 405,838 vehicles.
Both of the German luxury brands see China as their largest market.
China also became Jaguar Land Rover’s top market in 2012, as the British premium brand delivered 73,347 imported vehicles to Chinese consumers, 74 percent more than in 2011.
US automaker Ford said that its China sales performance boomed 21 percent from 2011 to a total of 626,616 vehicles last year, and General Motors local joint ventures managed to sell 2.85 million vehicles in 2012, representing an increase of 14.7 percent.
All Japanese automakers reported negative growth in China in 2012.
[Via: Car News China]