China: January auto sales rise, but fail to meet estimates image

As analysts estimate that China’s economy, currently the second largest in the world, might slow down this year, car sales seem to hint the same.

According to the state-backed China Association of Automobile Manufacturers, deliveries of passenger cars in China went up 7% to reach 1.8 million units. Although positive, this outlook is actually the lowest sales growth since February 2013, when deliveries fell – with the total delivered units failing to meet an average 1.88 million unit median of analysts.

“One big negative factor is with the policies,” said Xu Minfeng, an analyst at Central China Securities in Shanghai. “More and more cities are joining Beijing and Shanghai to impose restrictions on new car number plates due to air pollution and traffic congestion concerns.”

The Chinese auto association also said last month it predicts a sales rise of around 10% for 2014, which is lower than the 14% growth registered last year – in trend with the analysts estimates that the overall economy will slow because of government efforts to slow pollution and tone down excessive credit.

Among the best-selling nameplates we found Volkswagen’s Lavida sedan as the best passenger car for the month, while Great Wall Motor’s Haval models topped SUV sales.

Via Bloomberg