A slew of Chinese auto data released from Beijing on Tuesday shows that whatever concerns there may be about a Sino slowdown, it doesn't seem to have hit Chinese consumers, who continue to buy cars in the world’s largest auto market at a rate similar to their U.S. counterparts.
Noncommercial vehicle sales in China grew 11 percent to 1.35 million units in August compared to last year, while passenger car production jumped 13 percent to 1.39 million. Commercial vehicle production and sales increased in the high single digits. One interesting highlight: The three best-selling multipurpose vehicles (such as minivans) are all made by domestic Chinese manufacturers.
“January to August, car sales growth continued to slow down over the previous July, but overall still maintain double-digit growth,” the China Association for Automobile Manufacturers (CAAM) said in a statement.
For the first eight months of 2013, Chinese passenger car sales increased 13 percent to 11.3 million units compared to the same period last year, according to CAAM. U.S. consumers bought 10.6 million cars in the same period, a rise of 17 percent, according to automotive information and pricing provider Kelley Blue Book.
Here were the top three best-selling vehicles in China last month by segment:
Ford Focus ST, five-door compact made for the domestic market by Chongqing-based Changan Ford Mazda Automobile Co. Ltd., a three-way venture between Dearborn, Mich.-based Ford Motor Co. (NYSE:F), state-owned Chang'an Automobile (Group) Co. Ltd., and Mazda Motor Corporation (TYO:7261) of Hiroshima, Japan.
Volkswagen Lavida four-door compact made by Shanghai Volkswagen Automotive Co. Ltd., a joint venture between Shanghai-based state-owned SAIC Motor Corporation Limited, China’s largest auto company, and Volkswagen AG (FRA:VOW3) of Wolfsburg, Germany.
Volkswagen Sagitar, the local name for the Jetta four-door compact manufactured in China by Shanghai Volkswagen Automotive.
Sports Utility And Crossover Vehicless
Great Wall Haval H6 compact sport utility vehicle manufactured by Baoding-based Great Wall Motors Co. Ltd., China’s eight-largest auto company.
Volkswagen Tiguan compact crossover manufactured locally by Shanghai Volkswagen Automotive.
Honda CR-V compact crossover, manufactured locally by Wuhan-based Dongfeng Honda Automobile Co. Ltd., a joint venture between Dongfeng Motor Corporation and Honda Motor Co. Ltd. (NYSE:HMC) of Tokyo.
Multipurpose Vehicles (e.g., Minivans)
Wuling Hongguang S minivan manufactured by SAIC-GM-Wuling Automobile, a three-way joint venture between SAIC Motor Corporation, Liuzhou-based Wuling Motors Co. Ltd. and Detroit-based General Motors Co. (NYSE:GM).
Ounuo minivan manufactured by state-owned Chang'an Automobile (Group) Co. Ltd., China’s fourth-largest car company, based in Chongqing.
Lingzhi CMV multipurpose vehicle manufactured by state-owned Wuhan-based Dongfeng Motor Corporation, China’s second-largest car company.