Good Sign: GM China Sales Down Only 10.6 Percent In China

Bertel Schmitt
by Bertel Schmitt
good sign gm china sales down only 10 6 percent in china

Today, GM did something highly unusual: It abandoned all spin and said that sales in China were down pretty much across the board in February: “General Motors and its joint ventures sold 215,070 vehicles in China during February. Sales were down 10.6 percent from the same month last year due to the week-long Lunar New Year holiday falling in February this year.” We at TTAC understand.

GM China February 2013Jan’13YoY2M’13YoYGM China215,070-10.6%525,8357.9%Shanghai GM101,023-2.0%255,24312.4%Buick52,340-0.8%138,84912.1%Chevrolet46,388-11.5%112,5295.4%Cadillac2,2958.1%3,865-24.4%SAIC-GM-Wuling110,193-15.4%262,0124.7%Wuling104,138-11.7%248,939Baojun6,055-24.5%13,073FAW-GM3,670-48.1%8,160-14.1%Black: GM data. Blue: Calculated from historical GM data

GM also did the right and sensible thing, namely to add January and February up. For the first two months, GM’s sales in China are up 7.9 percent, which is pretty good. The number would even be better, would results not continue to be dragged down by a still laggardly Wuling. Shanghai GM’s sales, i.e. those of Buick, Chevrolet, and Cadillac, are up 12.1 percent.

The Baojun brand was launched in February 2012, which makes that Jan/Feb comparison looks a little too rosy.

All in all, a good start, and a good early indicator of the health of the Chinese auto market, which had been shrouded in Chinese New Year fog for months.

Join the conversation
  • Mike978 Mike978 on Mar 05, 2013

    Are those figures correct? I ask because Shanghai GM is up 12.4% YoY (Jan and Feb) but none of the component brands get to that growth (12.1, 5.4 and -24.4), so the average would be lower. Also for SAIC-GM-Wuling the reported growth is 4.7% but the two component brands have 35.9 and 63.1% - so the weighted average would be much higher than 4.7% Also should the second column be labeled February not January?

    • See 2 previous
    • Ranwhenparked Ranwhenparked on Mar 05, 2013

      @Bertel Schmitt GM's media release from Feb. 7th, 2012 claimed 9,006 Baojun sales in January last year, most of which were no doubt due to dealers stocking up on inventory for the launch. What you had seems totally right, you have to work with what GM China gives you and if there's some variation in their numbers, that's just how it is.

  • 28-Cars-Later 28-Cars-Later on Mar 05, 2013

    I want those trunk emblems...

  • Doctor olds Doctor olds on Mar 05, 2013

    @mike978- your math is correct. In the first two months of 2012, GM reported fewer SGM sales, 227,170 than the total Buick-Chev-Cad totals of 235,746 they reported. This year those totals are the same. The discrepancy is 8,576 units, which makes the B-C-C total increase only 8.3% vs the 12.4% reported for SGM. I have no idea why the counts are different.