Luxury auto makers upbeat about bigger sales _Auto–China Economic Net

17 Apr 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »
Toyota E'z

An FT-EV II concept electric car is seen at the Toyota booth at the Guangzhou 2010 Auto Show in Guangzhou yesterday. The 8th China (Guangzhou) International Automobile Exhibition will open to the public from today.

Luxury car makers are bullish they will achieve higher sales growth thanks to Chinese consumers who are becoming more affluent, Shanghai Daily learnt at the week-long China (Guangzhou) International Automobile Exhibition which opened to the media yesterday.

After enjoying a year of record sales in China in 2010, auto makers are relatively conservative toward the domestic market next year on speculation of a slowdown in overall demand.

The booming sales may lose steam in 2011 as tax cuts and subsidies to spur rural consumption and upgrades, which have helped China to overtake the United States as the world’s largest auto market, are due to expire at the end of this year, industry observers said.

Mercedes-Benz and General Motors are among auto makers which said they see the overall market growing between 10 percent and 15 percent next year.

By comparison, China’s passenger car sales surged 46 percent annually to 13.6 million units in 2009 and sales are expected to rise 28 percent this year to 17.5 million units.

Japan’s Toyota Motor Corp aims to sell 900,000 units in China next year, or an increase of 12.5 percent from 2010, it said. Toyota premiered utility vehicle E’Z and Zelas, an urban two-door sports coupe, to target at more specific customer groups in China.

E’Z will be produced by Toyota’s joint venture with Guangzhou Automobile Group and slated to be in the market next year.

The model, with engines of 1.6 liters, 1.8 liters and 2.0 liters, will sell between 130,000 yuan (US$19,477) and 180,000 yuan.

Toyota E'z

Dongfeng Peugeot targets to sell 200,000 sedans in 2011, up an annual 33 percent. It estimated sales may rise 40 percent from a year earlier to 150,000 units in 2010.

Industry executives, however, believe the luxury sector could better weather the expected slower sales.

The premium sector will continue the strong momentum and we are very confident its growth rate will be higher than the average, said Bjoern Hauber, executive vice president of sales and marketing at Mercedes-Benz (China) Ltd.

We have been seeing a really high demand for premium cars as there are so many people who want to upgrade their cars and so many people make more money, added Hauber.

For the first 11 months, the auto maker sold over 129,500 Mercedes-Benz, Maybach, AMG and smart in China, a strong annual surge of 119 percent. It expects annual sales of 140,000 units this year, and is well positioned to achieve a more than doubling in sales to 300,000 cars by 2015. It also said it plans to boost local production to 70 percent by 2015 from less than 40 percent now.

Nissan Motor Co’s luxury Infiniti has sold 11,000 units so far this year, more than doubling last year’s and already exceeded its 2010 target of 10,000 units.

Toyota E'z

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