China’s auto sector will continue booming even after government stimulus measures expire, Nissan Motor CEO Carlos Ghosn said yesterday, adding that his company will struggle to meet demand, AFP reported.
“The potential of the Chinese market is huge,” Ghosn told reporters. “I’m very optimistic that no matter what is the (government) policy we are going to have growth in the (coming) years.”
China’s auto sales soared 77.9% in September from a year ago to 1.33 million units — the seventh straight month that sales exceeded the one million unit mark — thanks to government incentives, such as cutting taxes on small cars and subsidizing new-energy vehicles. The tax cuts are due to expire at the end of this year.
Nissan sold a record 400,632 passenger cars in China in the first nine months, up 47.2% and exceeding the total sales of 2008. Japan’s No.3 carmaker plans to boost the output of its factory in southern Guangdong province by 250,000 units to 600,000 by 2011, taking its total production capacity in China to 700,000 units.
Ghosn also said Nissan was in talks with government officials in the central Chinese city of Wuhan to buy its electric vehicle, the Leaf, which will hit Japan, Europe and the U.S. markets in late 2010.
But there were no immediate plans to manufacturer the zero-emissions vehicle in China, Ghosn said. “We are waiting for the policies to be established in China. We have no doubt that it will happen,” he added.