Manufacturing News

China's sluggish light vehicle sales rose 0.3% in November

China's light-vehicle sales edged up 0.3 percent year-on-year in November, as strong sales of SUVs were negated by sluggish demand for microvans.

Automakers sold 1.3 million passenger cars, SUVs, MPVs and microvans in November, according to figures released by the China Association of Automobile Manufacturers (CAAM).

Sales of SUVs and MPVs increased 20.7 percent and 11.0 percent, respectively. But car sales declined 0.7 percent and microvan deliveries fell 9.5 percent.

Although CAAM did not release separate results for the luxury vehicles, demand in that segment has remained strong. Audi, Mercedes and BMW reported sales increases of 69 percent, 24 percent and 11 percent in November.

But many of China's mass-market automakers have struggled. Honda sales declined 3.3 percent, while Ford sales dropped 7 percent. By contrast, GM sales jumped 20 percent after the automaker's SAIC-GM-Wuling joint venture slashed prices of its entry-level microvans.

In the first 11 months, China's light vehicle sales rose 5.3 percent from a year earlier to 13.1 million vehicles. By contrast, light-vehicle sales for all of 2010 jumped 33 percent.

China's red-hot automotive market cooled off considerably this year after Beijing ended tax incentives for small vehicles and the scrappage program in 2010.

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