SHANGHAI -- General Motors and its two Chinese joint ventures reported sales of 246,066 units in June, up only 0.2 percent as price cuts in May failed to ignite a rebound in volume. For the first six months, GM's China sales rose 4.4 percent year on year to 1.72 million units, with strong deliveries of SUVs and multipurpose vehicles offset by softer demand for sedans and microbuses.
Volvo Car Corp.'s retail sales in China dropped 4 percent year on year last month to 7,282 vehicles due to sluggish demand in the Chinese luxury car market. Through June, Volvo's China sales slid 1 percent from a year earlier to 38,292 vehicles.
China's passenger vehicle imports plunged 22 percent year on year to 434,423 through May as the country's slowing economy hurt demand for luxury cars and light trucks. During the period, SUV imports dropped 20 percent to 278,022 vehicles while sedan imports slumped 27 percent to 136,354 vehicles, the China Automobile Dealers Association reported. Imports of multipurpose vehicles declined 9 percent to 20,047 vehicles.
Zhejiang Geely Holding Group Co. will invest 282 million yuan ($45.5 million) in Icelandic methanol producer Carbon Recycling International over the next three years, with the two partners planning to launch production of methanol fuel in China. Geely and Carbon Recycling also will develop and sell methanol-powered cars in China, Iceland and other European countries, Geely said last week.
BEIJING -- The Cuban government ordered 719 cars from China's BYD Co., which it will rent out to tourists in a deal that is a bright spot for Chinese automakers facing a weak export market. BYD, backed by Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway Inc., did not disclose the value of the gasoline-powered car fleet.
General Motors' passenger vehicle joint venture with SAIC Motor Corp. has changed its name to SAIC General Motors (SAIC-GM for short). The partnership previously called itself Shanghai General Motors. The logo on new Buick, Chevrolet and Cadillac models produced by the joint venture also will be changed starting this month to SAIC-GM, reported Xinhua, an official Chinese news agency.
Toyota Motor Corp. and Honda Motor Co. recorded sharp sales gains in China last month,outperforming the industry and gaining on that market's leaders, General Motors and Volkswagen. Toyota and its two local joint-venture partners sold 100,600 cars in China last month, up nearly 42 percent year-on-year and its fastest sales growth since February 2014.
SHANGHAI -- China's government has set lofty goals for domestic automakers. The government's latest master development plan, dubbed China Manufacturing 2025, expects Chinese automakers to sell 1 million electric vehicles and plug-in hybrids annually by 2020, and 3 million a year by 2025 -- and to control more than 70 percent of China's green market by 2020 and more than 80 percent by 2025. But given the EV and plug-in hybrid market's murky prospects, chances for success appear slim. Pictured: Yang Jian is managing editor of Automotive News China.
After a modest uptick in the first five months, light-vehicle sales in China are likely to stagnate this summer as automakers struggle with rising inventories, a soft economy and a volatile stock market, global research firm LMC Automotive says. In a report issued this week, LMC Automotive researcher John Zeng predicted light-vehicle sales in China will rise 5.7 percent this year, down from 10 percent in 2014.
Beijing Hyundai topped mass-market brands in J.D. Power's latest survey of Chinese consumers' satisfaction with the car-buying experience. The joint venture between BAIC Motor Corp. and Hyundai Motor Co. scored 812 out of a possible 1,000, higher than other mass-market brands, which averaged 682 points, Power said.