Sales in China dropped for Mercedes by 88.7% in February, reaching 14,500 units, a drop of 7% compared to February 2011.
The company reported that sales declined in part because Beijing Benz Automotive Co. had limited availability of some hot-selling models, halting the production during the Spring Festival holiday. In 2011 Mercedes realized sales of 198,520 units in China, making China one of the fastest growing markets for Benz brand.
Great Wall Securities Co. analyst Ran Fei said, “Even though the actual holidays were five working days, some dealerships took the opportunity to close their stores for a longer time. The numbers are disappointing.”
In January, GM reported an 8% decline in China sales, Chevrolet sales suffered a 20% hit to 54,399 units, for Ford sales fell a staggering 42% last month, while BMW and Audi both posted higher sales, enjoying a 30% and 23% t gain respectively.
Huatai Securities Co. analyst Chen Liang adds, “Demand is still there and consumers in the smaller, less developed cities will still have a growing need for cars. These numbers don’t change my outlook for the year.”