China is now BMW's fourth largest market in the world, Xu Zhijun, vice president of BMW China Automotive Trading, said at the 2009 Guangzhou motor show.

Xu told the Xinhua news agency BMW's China sales hit a new high of 71,952 cars in the first 10 months, up 36.7% year on year, with October sales up a massive 81%.

Its Chinese joint ventures are increasing production to meet market demand and it has just announced a new plant with a total investment of over RMB5bn.

Guangzhou show launches included the 5-series Gran Turismo, 760Li and 320i.

The company last night announced its sixth generation 5-series with longer wheelbase, new engines, new front suspension and a full exterior and interior redesign.