Chinese brands dominate May car sales in China

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May saw Chinese brands make up four out of the five top-selling brands in the China market according to data from the China Passenger Car Association (CPCA). The market for a long time was dominated by joint ventures with BYD last year becoming the first Chinese producer to ever take first place for sales. Thanks to the rapid electrification of the market Chinese brands are prospering as evidenced by both the figures for May and the year to date.  The figures come just days after Li Yunfei, GM of BYD’s brand and PR department, predicted at the 2024 China Automobile Forum in Chongqing that the share of Chinese brands would reach 80% within the next two years, currently it‘s around 60%.

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BYD continued to dominate in May with retail sales of 268,226 a year-on-year increase of 21.5% meaning that BYD alone made up 15.7% of the Chinese car market. The only joint venture in the top five was FAW Volkswagen which with sales of 124,029 was down -17.5% giving a market share of 7.3%. Geely is within striking distance of the number two spot selling under 300 cars less. Sales for Geely were up 31.6% year-on-year and the Zhejiang-based private company now controls 7.2% of the market. Changan secured the number four spot despite a decline of -12.7% and it had a 5.6% market share. Rounding out the top five was the top climber Chery which saw sales increase by 59.3%, with the Anhui company now controlling 5.2% of the market. The top 10 is then rounded out by Shanghai Volkswagen, GAC Toyota, Dongfeng Nissan, BMW Brilliance, and Tesla China.

PositionBrandSalesYOY ChangeShare
1BYD268,22621.5%15.7%
2FAW Volkswagen124,029-17.5%7.3%
3Geely123,76831.6%7.2%
4Changan95,739-12.7%5.6%
5Chery88,87359.3%5.2%
6Shanghai Volkswagen83,713-11.9%4.9%
7GAC Toyota69,593-10.2%4.1%
8Dongfeng Nissan61,725-0.9%3.6%
9BMW Brilliance55,301-3.2%3.2%
10Tesla China55,21529.9%3.2%
Retail sales in May for the top ten brands in China

May sales showed a total of 1,710,000 cars, down -1.9% year-on-year. However, new energy vehicle sales show no sign of abating with sales up by 38.6% for a total of 804,000.

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These rankings are not a May anomaly with the figures for January to May showing a very similar pattern. The only difference was that Shanghai Volkswagen managed to squeeze into fifth place ahead of Chery by around 20,000 sales and that tenth position belongs to the Shanghai GM Wuling joint venture rather than Tesla. Chery again is the star of the figures showing a 75.7% increase in sales year-on-year with Geely also showing a very respectable 40.2% rise.

PositionBrandSalesYOY ChangeShare
1BYD1,108,36320.0%13.7%
2FAW Volkswagen638,327-3.3%7.9%
3geely628,17140.2%7.8%
4Changan562,9559.7%7.0%
5Shanghai Volkswagen427,775-1.4%5.3%
6Chery407,73675.7%5.1%
7GAC Toyota292,377-14.8%3.6%
8Dongfeng Nissan271,2790.0%3.4%
9BMW Brilliance263,868-4.0%3.3%
10SAIC GM Wuling261,9030.2%3.2%
Top 10 brands in China January to May

BYD’s dominance is even more apparent when looking at sales of new energy vehicles where BYD’s market share is larger than the next five producers combined.

PositionBrandSalesYOY ChangeShare
1BYD268,22621.5%33.4%
2Geely56,172148.3%7.0%
3Tesla China55,21529.9%6.9%
4Changan48,777100.3%6.1%
5SAIC GM Wuling42,49117.2%5.3%
6GAC Aion37,148-17.5%4.6%
7Li Auto35,02023.8%4.4%
8Seres32,226491.3%4.0%
9Chery30,630300.2%3.8%
10Great Wall21,6443.8%2.7%
Top 10 brands in China for NEV sales in May

Sources: Autohome, Fast Technology

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3 COMMENTS

  1. Mainland Chinese need to purchase more from domestic brands. EU protectionist nature is laid bare for everyone to see.

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    • EU protectionism? Try the EU, the United States, Turkey, Brazil… They all have tariffed the Chinese! But the reader has to ask himself why. Could it be that the communists have been plowing tons of cash into these Chinese car companies which the rest of the world sees as unfair? After all, it’s not just the mighty United States who is leveling tariffs now; it’s now the whole world! Once the mad rush China is going through dies down international competition will once again dominate. Then we’ll see who the real automotive leaders are…

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  2. I feel sorry for the CEO of BYD. The poor guy has to put up with all this national fervor; there’s no time for his company to make a profit! Come to think of it, BYD has to be the least profitable car company in the world right now, with the prices they’re selling their cars at. How can the communists ever expect the company to grow if it’s not allowed to generate a profit?
    Gotta give the Chinese props, though. They finally have something they can be proud of. They’re about where the domestic American car companies were during the 1950s when general motors was going toe to toe with Ford motor company, with general motors executing their “60/60/60” plan. That was, 60% of the automobile market share, at a $60 share price, by the year 1960. Those were the golden years for American motoring companies, just as 2023-2030 will be the golden years for Chinese car companies. Better enjoy it now while it lasts, because the United States will come back… With a vengeance!

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