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Audi narrowly outsells Mercedes-Benz in July
Automotive News China | 2018/8/14

Audií»s China sales topped those of Mercedes-Benz last month for the first time this year. 

Audi sales increased 3.8 percent to 53,191 while Mercedes-Benz deliveries rose 8.3 percent to 52,616. 

The growth in Audi sales was led by the locally built stretched A4 sedan whose deliveries surged 33 percent from a year earlier to 13,985 last month.

Last month, combined sales of the BMW and Mini brands in China rose 7.8 percent to 46,692, BMW AG said, without disclosing separate results for the two brands.

In the first seven months, Audi still trailed Mercedes Benz: Audi deliveries jumped 17 percent to 359,781 while Mercedes-Benz sales advanced 15 percent to 392,780.

In the same period, sales of the BMW and Mini brands in China totaled 396,493, up 2.9 percent from a year earlier.

Audi remained the best-selling luxury brand in China last year. 

Favorable tariffs
Audi is poised to benefit more than its two leading German rivals, Mercedes and BMW, from lower tariffs the Chinese government implemented on imported vehicles in July.

The government slashed custom duties on imported vehicles to 15 percent from 25 percent. 

On July 6, in retaliation for the Trump administrationí»s tariffs on a wide range of Chinese goods, Beijing raised tariffs on U.S.-made goods, including light vehicles, by 25 percentage points to 40 percent.

Mercedes-Benz and BMW now find themselves in the crossfire of the ongoing trade war between China and the U.S. because both automakers import crossovers and SUVs to China from U.S. plants. 

Mercedes-Benz exports the GLE and GLS models to China from its Alabama plant while BMW ships the X5 and X6 to China from a factory in South Carolina.

By contrast, Audi does not import vehicles to China from the U.S.

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