SUV sales boom in China auto market

Beijing, Nov 22 (IANS) An ongoing auto show in China’s Guangdong province has seen a growing demand for sport-utility vehicles (SUV) from Chinese customers, a media report said on Sunday.

Domestic and foreign players in the auto market are taking part in the Guanghzhou Auto Show, one of China’s biggest auto shows, putting the spotlight on SUVs, the People’s Daily reported.

Yale Zhang, Automotive Foresight’s Managing Director, said many auto brands, such as Ford’s Everest and Great Wall Motor Co’s Haval H7, have shifted their focus to larger SUVs, especially since China scrapped the one-child policy.

“We clearly see a lot of families want to shift from sedans to SUVs because of their safety, comfort and also bigger room. Because now you will have a family, you have a child, you know SUV obviously is better. Even if you have two kids, SUV looks better than a sedan. So this is one of the reason why SUV in China is very popular and still growing.”

In the year through October, sales of SUVs surged 46 percent year-on-year in a broader market that grew 1.5 percent.

According to Automotive Foresight, a market and industry research company, 32 new SUV models are expected to be released in China.

Meanwhile, China’s official data showed that car prices dropped 3.4 percent in the first nine months of this year, outnumbering the 1.2 percent decline for passenger vehicles overall.

Carmakers like Volkswagen have expressed eagerness to expand investment in the Chinese market, with six new locally made models to be launched in the next three to four years.

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