GM’s sales fell 5.3% during the second quarter in China.

General Motors saw its second-quarter new vehicle sales in China fall 5.3% compared with year-ago results, despite the overall market seeing an increase during the same period.

According to the China Association of Automobile Manufacturers, or CAAM, sales rose 4.4% in April and 14.5% in May, and that June sales are expected to jump 11%, continuing the world’s largest automotive market’s rebound from the coronavirus pandemic.

GM delivered 713,600 vehicles during the quarter, the company reported, which is a significant improvement compared with the first quarter when, when sales dropped 43% due to the pandemic, which hit China first.

(GM’s April sales in China rebound, increasing 13.6 percent.)

One of GM’s assembly plants in China, where operations are back up and running.

GM has multiple joint venture operations in China to help produce three brands, Buick, Chevrolet and Cadillac, for the country. A Shanghai-based joint venture with SAIC Motor Corp. makes Buick, Chevrolet and Cadillac vehicles.

GM’s sales of Buick jumped 7.8%, but it was the automaker’s only bright spot during the quarter. Chevrolet plummeted 27.7% during the quarter while sales of luxury brand Cadillac fell 12%, GM said in a statement on Friday.

Sales of its entry-level, basic brand Wuling rose 9.7%, however, it’s Baojun operation more than offset that result by falling 30.7%. It has another venture, SGMW, with SAIC and Guangxi Automobile Group that produces minivans and has started making higher-end cars.

(China trims back recently extended NEV subsidies.)

While June’s results haven’t been tallied yet for GM or the industry, May provided plenty of reason to think that sales will continue to rise. Production and sales of automobiles were both approximately 2.2 million units. They rose 4% and 5.9% on a month-on-month basis, up 18.2% and 14.5% on a year-on-year basis, according to CAAM.

In May, the production and sales of passenger vehicles completed 1.66 million and 1.674 million respectively, up 4.5% and 8.9% on a month on month basis, up 11.2% and 7.0% on a year-on-year basis, and the growth rate has changed from negative to positive.

From January to May, 7.8 million and 7.9 million vehicles were produced and sold respectively, with the production and sales volume down 24.1% and 22.6% year on year respectively. For that five-month period, the production and sales of passenger vehicles completed 5.9 million and 6.1 million respectively, down 29.1% and 27.4% year on year.

(China shows there may be light at the end of the pandemic tunnel for automakers.)        

According to the sales volume of different models in the current month, the production and sales of SUVs and crossover vehicles have increased significantly – especially the crossovers – with a year-on-year growth of 47%.

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