GM Says China Car Sales on Track for Record 2012

GM Says China Car Sales on Track for Record 2012

In the first 11 months, sales surged 10.4% from a year earlier to 2.59 million vehicles, more than the total for the whole of last year.

SHANGHAI -- General Motors (IW 500/4)  said Thursday that its full-year sales in China, the world's biggest car market, will surpass last year's 2.55 million and set a new record.

In the first 11 months, sales of GM and its ventures in China surged 10.4% from a year earlier to 2.59 million vehicles, more than the total for the whole of last year, GM said.

For November alone, GM sold 260,018 vehicles in China, up 9.7% from 2011.

China's overall auto sales growth slowed last year after the government scrapped purchasing incentives and limited car numbers to ease traffic congestion and cut pollution.

In 2011 sales rose just 2.5% to 18.51 million units, compared with an increase of more than 32% in 2010, but growth has recovered slightly this year.

Nonetheless foreign manufacturers have bucked the slowdown with stronger brand recognition and perceptions of better quality among domestic consumers, although Japanese brands have been hurt by a territorial dispute between Beijing and Tokyo.

GM said last week that one of its Chinese joint ventures will invest 6.6 billion yuan (US$1.1 billion) in a new plant to meet growing demand for commercial vehicles.

The venture between GM and Chinese partners SAIC Motor and Wuling Motors aims to open the 400,000-vehicle-a-year plant in the southwestern metropolis of Chongqing in 2015.

Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2012

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