China Might Become BMW’s Largest Market This Year, Surpassing the US image

BMW said he believes China will become its largest market this year, surpassing the US, as the automaker attracts more customers in the Asian country with the 5-Series sedan.

During the first half, sales in China surpassed those in the US, and BMW expects deliveries in the Asian market to increase 10% by the end of 2013, according to Karsten Engel, head of BMW’s business in China. Analysts predict that 68% of China’s possible auto customers in the next 12 months will come from smaller cities.

“Strong growth in future will come from the smaller cities, and the strong growth will also come especially from the western region,” Engel said. “There are 100 cities with more than a million inhabitants in China with no premium car dealers at all, so this shows the huge potential we’re having in this country.”

BMW, which trails Audi in luxury-auto sales in China, has surpassed its rival in at least the past three years, with sales up 40% so far this year, compared with Audi’s 30% increase. BMW’s sales in China during the first six months were up 15% to 182,800 units and 9% to 172,787 units in the US. Audi’s sales in China increased 18% to 228,139 units during the same period.

Source: The Detroit News