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Toyota Maintains Global Sales Lead – Barely

VW closing gap as GM settles into third spot.

by on Jul.30, 2014

Strong demand for new models, such as the redesigned Corolla, helped Toyota retain the sales lead for the first half of 2014.

While its lead has been narrowing, Toyota Motor Co. retained its crown as the world’s best-selling automaker during the first half of 2014.

The maker edged out rivals Volkswagen AG and General Motors in the global sales sweepstakes as demand for its cars, trucks and crossovers surged to 5.097 million between January and June, a 4% increase fueled by growth in markets ranging from U.S. and Europe to China and the Japanese home islands.

Data Driven!

That was not only an all-time record but exceeded forecasts – while positioning Toyota to meet a goal of becoming the first automaker ever to sell 10 million vehicles in a single year. VW is also shooting for the 10 million mark, though preliminary data indicate it only tallied sales of 4.97 million vehicles during the first half, GM following at 4.92 million.

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Chinese Newspaper Lauds GM for Social Responsibility

GM China’s efforts to cut pollution, helping people nets honor.

by on Jul.25, 2014

General Motors China was recognized today as the fourth-best Fortune 500 company in the area of corporate social responsibility at the 2014 Corporate Social Responsibility Annual Conference in Beijing.

For the second consecutive year, Southern Weekly, an influential Chinese newspaper, honored General Motors China as one of the top companies in the area of corporate social responsibility for its civic spirit and sensitivity to the environment.

The Corporate Social Responsibility Annual Conference, which is sponsored by Southern Weekly, helps increase awareness of CSR among companies while honoring their significant achievements.

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Southern Weekly is described by western journalists as one of China’s most outspoken and independent news organizations; however, it is part of provincial newspaper group supervised by Guangdong Provincial Party Committee of China’s ruling Communist Party in Southern China in a province that has been leader in modernizing and expanding the Chinese economy. (more…)

GM, Ford Vehicle Sales Blazing in China

Makers posted record results for first six months.

by on Jul.08, 2014

With cars like the Focus selling well, Ford set a sales record for the first six months in China this year.

General Motors, Ford and their joint venture partners posted record sales in China for the first half of the 2014, capping off the period with a strong showing in June.

GM’s sales in China in the first six months increased 10.5% from last year’s previous record for the period to 1.73 million units. In June, GM’s sales increased 9.1%. Ford China reported a 35% increase for the first six months of 2014, selling 549,256 vehicles. Ford China’s June sales increased 17%, the automaker reported.

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“GM has experienced growth in demand for our products across China this year, especially at the higher end of our lineup and in the SUV/MPV segment,” said Matt Tsien, GM executive vice president and president of GM China. “We anticipate sales remaining strong through the end of 2014, as more people – particularly outside China’s major cities – become first-time vehicle buyers.” (more…)

Ford, GM Continue Torrid Sales Pace in China

Makers set May record; Ford expects to hit 1 million units in 2014.

by on Jun.09, 2014

With cars like the Focus selling well, Ford expects to surpass 1 million in sales in China this year.

General Motors and Ford continue to roll up big sales totals in China, setting sales records during May.

Ford China sales grew 32% in May with 93,323 and Ford now expects to sell more than 1 million vehicles in China for the first time ever during 2014. Year-to-date sales were up 39%, with 461,473 wholesales sold compared to 332,308 wholesales sold in the first five months of 2013, Ford said.

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“Our sales are a direct reflection of our continued commitment to bring the best of Ford to China with a great lineup of Ford cars and utilities that offer high quality, great fuel efficiency, world class safety and smart technologies,” said John Lawler, chairman and chief executive officer, Ford Motor China. (more…)

Baojun Scoring Major Gains for GM in China

by on Apr.24, 2014

Introduced at this years Beijing Auto Show, the Baojun 610 is the brand's newest model.

A new brand General Motors launched only three years ago is poised to double its sales this year as GM continues to move ahead with its rapid expansion in China.

Baojun, the brand that belongs to the Shanghai-GM-Wuling joint venture sold 100,000 cars last year and sales are expect to climb to 200,000 units for all of 2014, according to Ray Biezrynski, executive vice president of SGM-W, one of the cornerstones of GM’s ongoing expansion in what is now the world’s largest automotive market.

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The growth of the Baojun brand could be particularly critical considering GM last year slipped behind long-time rival Volkswagen AG, now the Chinese market sales leader. But the impact isn’t limited to China.  The booming Asian nation now accounts for more than one third of GM’s global sales. (more…)

GM Wants to Regain Sales Crown in China

Maker plans $12 billion investment; 4 new plants, 60 new vehicles.

by on Apr.21, 2014

The Chevrolet Trax makes its Beijing debut.

For General Motors, the Beijing Auto Show brings both some good news and bad: on the positive side, the Chinese market continues to defy skeptics who worry the country’s economy is cooling – but the downside is that the U.S. maker is now struggling in second place, behind German rival Volkswagen AG, after years as the sales leader in the world’s largest automotive market.

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That’s something GM doesn’t take lightly, the company’s second-in-command, President Dan Ammann, using the Beijing Auto Show to announce yet another major expansion plan.

Expect to see GM boost its capacity in China to 5 million new vehicles annually as it pushes ahead with an aggressive $12 billion expansion plan that includes the construction of four new assembly plants and a new engine plant over the next two years.

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GM China Sales on the Rise During First Quarter

Automaker could hit record of 3.6 million units.

by on Apr.07, 2014

The Chevy Sail is Chevrolet's second-best selling vehicle in China behind the Cruze.

General Motors, which could use a bit of good news these days, is off to a fast start in the Chinese market where GM’s total sales could top 1 million units by the middle of April as the auto giant and its partners fight to regain the leadership in China from rival Volkswagen AG.

GM and its joint ventures had record sales in China during March and the first quarter of 2014 sales in March increased 7.8%, raising GM’s domestic sales in China during the first quarter to 919,114 units – an increase of 12.6% from the same period a year ago.

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The automaker posted record sales of 3.2 million units in 2013 and the strong first quarter sales leave it on track to hit 3.6 million units. (more…)

GM Pulls Opel Out of China; Will Play Larger Role in U.S.

New move in global brand realignment.

by on Mar.31, 2014

The Opel Adam S is not going to be available in China as GM is pulling the brand out of the country.

As part of a continuing global brand realignment, General Motors has pulled Opel out of China. The move comes barely a month after the Chevrolet brand was yanked out of Opel’s home market in Europe.

German-based Opel has been struggling to gain traction in China since entering the market there two decades ago. Even though GM is the second-largest manufacturer in the Chinese market – generating 3.16 million sales in 2013 – Opel’s 22 dealers sold a mere 4,365 vehicles there last year.

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But Opel won’t vanish entirely. Its product engineering operations will continue to assist in the development of new products for China – as well as for the U.S., Opel announcing it will produce a new model for Buick that will be exported to the States later this decade. (more…)

GM, Ford Post Record February Sales in China

Makers flourishing despite country’s sluggish economy.

by on Mar.06, 2014

The Ford Mondeo is a strong seller in China and helping lead the maker to rising sales there.

While the Chinese economy may be sluggish, those forces don’t seem to be hurting General Motors and Ford. The two U.S. automakers, which continue to expand their footprints in the country, posted record sales results in February after seeing strong results in January too.

GM reported its joint ventures sold 257,770 vehicles in China during February, setting a new record for the month as sales increased 19.9% from the same month last year. Continued strong demand for the Ford Focus, the best-selling nameplate in China last year, helped Ford China increase sales by 67% in February, with 73,040 vehicles sold.

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Both GM and Ford are off to a fast start despite concerns about the Chinese economy, which is facing a variety of challenges and is growing at a slower pace than in the past. China’s economy grew 7.7% last year, according to Bloomberg, and similar growth is expected again this year. (more…)

Volkswagen Wrests China Sales Crown from GM

German maker takes title by about 30,000 units.

by on Jan.10, 2014

VW toppled GM from the top of the sales mountain top in China this year by 30,000 units.

Volkswagen AG reached one of its major goals in 2013, selling more cars than any foreign automaker in China. In capturing the title, it outsold General Motors for the first time in eight years in China.

Volkswagen’s two joint ventures sold more than 3.19 million units for the year, the government-backed China Association of Automobile Manufacturers reported. The victory was narrow as GM sold 3.16 million units as sales of new vehicle topped 20 million units overall for the first time. VW’s victory in China also served to offset the company’s disappointment in the U.S. where its sales dropped.

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The duel between GM and VW is expected to resume this year as both companies are expecting more growth in 2014. (more…)