Chinese carmakers have reported sales up 20-50% during the Spring Festival holiday, compared with the previous year's level, even though discounts were not as deep as in recent months and some manufacturers even raised prices, the Shanghai Daily reports.
 
The strong pricing power was the result of a new make-to-order strategy adopted by China's automakers to avoid a repeat of last year's high inventory levels, it said. The paper attributed its data to dealerships.

The paper said there were backorders of popular models such as Toyota's Reiz, the Ford Focus and the new Passat Lingyu from Shanghai Volkswagen, which were out of stock even before the holiday began.

Small cars including the Chery QQ, which were priced between 20,000 yuan and 40,000 yuan, and the Gol by Shanghai Volkswagen were the most popular during the holiday, with sales surging 50%, the newspaper said.
 
Prices were not as low as some buyers expected, however, due to the effects of the shift to make-to-order employed by more and more Chinese automakers, including Shanghai Volkswagen Automobile Co Ltd, Guangzhou Honda Automobile Corp and Guangzhou Toyota Motor Corp, the paper added.