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Q1 sales summary of Chinese mainstream automakers

China's vehicle outputs and sales in March reached 2,558,000 units and 2,520,000 units, down by 2.73% and 5.18% year on year, according to the China Association of Automobile Manufacturers (CAAM).

For the first quarter of the year, the vehicle outputs and sales in this country were 6,335,700 units and 6,372,400 units, dropping 9.81% and 11.32% over a year ago respectively. Compared to the 14.94% year-on-year decrease in Jan.-Feb. sales, the negative growth in year-to-date (YTD) sales has been somewhat shrunk.

According to the sales data released by some mainstream Chinese automakers, SAIC Motor, Dongfeng Motor Group, Changan Automobile, GAC Group and Geely Auto, whose respective Q1 sales exceeded 120 thousand units, all faced negative growth. Great Wall Motor and BYD maintained their rising momentum.

SAIC Motor

SAIC Motor saw its Q1 sales apparently slide 15.88% from the previous year to 1,533,005 vehicles, among which the March sales shrank 14% to 558,558 units, the automaker announced on April 10. This was the seventh month in a row for the company facing year-on-year downturn.

For the first three months of the year, SAIC-IVECO Hongyan Commercial Vehicle and SAIC Motor-CP accomplished year-on-year sales increase, while the other subsidiaries all suffered negative growth. SAIC GM Wuling Indonesia Co.,Ltd is not available for comparison since it was just included the sales report in January, 2019.

SAIC Volkswagen, SAIC-GM-Wuling and SAIC-GM posted year-on-year drop of 8.8%, 25.41% and 13.1% respectively in YTD sales despite their substantial market shares. According to the China Passenger Car Association (CPCA), SAIC Volkswagen and SAIC-GM were still the champion and the second runner-up by March PV wholesale volume (PV hereby only refers sedan, SUV and MPV) from the previous month.

Dongfeng Motor Group

In March, Dongfeng Motor Group saw its sales edged up 1.79% year on year. Of that, PV sales edged down 1.26% to 233,907 units, mainly affected by the 22.86% decline of MPV sales. Besides, car and SUV sales in March reached 115,264 units and 102,898 units, falling 0.99% and climbing 2.82% over the previous year respectively.

For the first quarter, the automaker faced a year-on-year sales decline of 10.01%. YTD sales of the car, SUV and MPV segments shrank 2.02%, 20.31% and 29.69% respectively.

Among subsidiaries, Dongfeng Honda sported the biggest positive growth in March sales with 73,536 vehicles delivered. Two Sino-French joint ventures, Dongfeng Renault and DPCA, were still troubled by severe downturn.

Changan Automobile

Chongqing Changan Automobile Co.,Ltd (Changan Automobile) announced a year-on-year drop of 26.9% in March sales. For the first three months of the year, the automaker saw its cumulative sales tumble 31.8% year on year to 448,811 units.

Compared with the performance in February, all subsidiaries got their sales picked up evidently. However, compared to the sales period a year ago, none of them realized positive growth. Especially, Changan Ford, selling 15,265 cars in March, suffered a plunge of 66.2%. During the first quarter, it sold 36,800 vehicles in total, a year-on-year nosedive of 71.8%.

According to the latest sales report, Changan Automobile year-to-date NEV sales reached 11,853 units, among which 5,411 units were sold in March.

GAC Group

For the first three months, GAC Group’s PV sales totaled 493,975 units, slightly falling 2.64% over the previous year. The sales drop should be entirely attributed to the SUV sales performance, which tumbled 26.77% year on year to 203,530 units. However, the sedan and MPV sectors achieved impressive sales growth of 25.11% and 47.74% respectively.

GAC Honda gained outstanding year-on-year increase in both March sales and Q1 sales. The YTD sales of the Accord were 52,879 units, among which 20,412 units were sold in March, a year-on-year surge of 47.4%. Besides, the Q1 sales of the Crider, the Vezel, the Fit and the Odyssey reached 36,755 units, 27,035 units, 38,066 units and 7,658 units respectively.

GAC Toyota also achieved vigorous growth. The YTD sales of the all-new Camry jumped 21% from the year-ago period to 41,062 units. The Levin family, absorbing the Levin Hybrid E+ last month, had a Jan.-Mar. sales volume of 55,156 units.

Geely Auto

Geely Auto announced on April 8 that its sales in March reached 124,643 units, climbing 3% year on year and surging 49% month on month. For the first quarter of the year, the automaker has completed 24% of its 1.51 million-unit sales target with 366,588 vehicles delivered in total, a year-on-year drop of 5.1%.

In March, the sales of the Emgrand family amounted to 39,649 units, accounting for 32% of total monthly sales. To be specific, the sales of the Geely Emgrand, the Emgrand GL and the Emgrand GS all represented remarkable month-on-month increase, significantly driving the overall performance.

The Boyue, with 22,367 units delivered, was crowned the best seller by March sales. Only 2,510 units of Borui series sold last month, while still showing a growth of 23% compared with the previous month.

The Geely Jiaji, Geely's first MPV model just hitting the market on March 11, gained a favorable outset with 3,085 vehicles delivered last month. It is worth mentioning that the Jiaji is also China's first plug-in hybrid MPV available for sale.

Great Wall Motor

Great Wall Motor said that its March sales jumped 16.82% over the year-ago period to 103,090 units. Meanwhile, for the first quarter of 2019, the company has sold 283,842 vehicles, a year-on-year growth of 10.61%.

The Haval SUV brand saw its Jan.-Mar. sales evidently rise 17.82% to 70,570 units, among which the sales of the Haval H6 has already surpassed 100,000 units. Thanks to a strong cost-performance, the Haval M6, with 10,192 vehicles delivered in March, obtained a tremendous year-on-year growth of 135%. Besides, the sales of the Haval F7 reached 14,512 units last month, exceeding 10,000 units for four straight months.

As a new comer in NEV industry, ORA is rather popular among urban consumers. For the first three month, the NEV brand sold 14,096 vehicles in total. As to March performance, the sales of the ORA iQ and ORA R1 reached 3,029 units and 4,002 units respectively. The ORA R1 Goddess, which is particularly designed for ladies, went on sales at the end of March.


BYD Company Limited announced that it sold 46,825 vehicles in March, achieving a year-on-year growth of 8.5% and a month-on-month surge of 74.5%.

For the first three months, the carmaker saw its cumulative sales climb 5.19% over a year earlier to 117,578 units.

Both March sales and YTD sales of new energy vehicles (NEVs) represented remarkable year-on-year increase. In March, BYD’s NEV sales shot up 115.6% to 30,075 units. Of that, the sales of new energy passenger vehicles (PVs) showed a marvelous growth of 122.9% thanks to the blooming performance of all-electric PVs, whose March sales skyrocketed 356.5% year on year to 21,308 units.

Fuel-burning vehicle sales in March jumped 35% month on month, while plunged 42.7% compared with the same period a year ago. To be specific, the sales of sedans, SUVs and MPVs declined 51.29%, 13.88% and 49.91% year on year respectively to 3,881 units, 5,318 units and 7,551 units.

JAC Motors

JAC Motors was hit by year-on-year decline of 17.51% and 9.09% in March sales and Q1 sales.

Among 16,911 PVs sold last month, 7,475 units, 4,632 units and 4,804 units came from the SUV, MPV and sedan segments respectively, all less than that of a year ago. Especially, the MPV sales were more than halved over the previous year.

Export volume in March tumbled 47.21% to 4,538 units, which made the Q1 number aggregated 12,276 units, a slump of 35.46%.

The NEV sector presented a substantial growth. The sales of new energy PVs amounted to 6,616 units in March and 15,007 units in Q1, jumping 31.5% and 28.26% respectively.