China Automobile Sales Fall 8.2% In 2019: CAAM

Marco Green
January 14, 2020

For 2019, GM said sales dropped 15% from a year earlier, its most severe annual decline in China, which is its largest overseas market.

Its manufacturing numbers are down as well as the company produced 146,473 vehicles in China in the fourth quarter, which is 14.7% less than in the same time period past year.

That would compare with 8.2% a year ago when sales were pressured by new emission standards in a shrinking economy that was contending with tit-for-tat import tariffs with the United States.

Annual industry vehicle sales in China fell in 2019 for the first time since the 1990s, and they are expected to fall this year, too.

The China Association of Automobile Manufacturers (CAAM) said that the number of automobiles sold in 2019 dropped 8.2 percent since the earlier year to come in at 25.77 million.

Sales of electric and gasoline-electric hybrid sedans and SUVs in 2019 sank 4 percent over a year earlier to 1.2 million.

From 2012 to 2018, the market for such models grew at break-neck speed - by about 100 times.

Monthly sales of electric vehicles rose double-digit in early 2019, but collapsed after Beijing ended government subsidies to buyers in July.

Ford sold 567,854 vehicles last year in China, down 26.1 percent from a year earlier, the company said in a statement Monday. In the fourth quarter of 2019, Ford's sales dropped 14.7%.

On Monday, Ford said its China vehicle sales slumped more than a quarter in 2019 for its third year of decline.

The downturn is squeezing global and Chinese automakers that are spending billions of dollars to meet government mandates to sell electric vehicles. GM sales in China peaked at just over 4 million units in 2017.

But it remained cautious about 2020, echoing bearish comments about sales in China from General Motors Co.

Among models that were launched in the fourth quarter, the new Ford Escape performed better than any other model in terms of received orders, while the Lincoln Corsair is the first localized Lincoln vehicle in China.

Anning Chen, president and chief executive of Ford Greater China, said that while 2019 was a "challenging" year for the automaker, it saw its market share in the high-to-premium segment stabilise and its sales decline in the value segment start to narrow in the second-half of the year.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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