BYD was the top-selling car brand in China in the first four weeks of November, brokerage data showed, outperforming the Volkswagen brand in a reversal that, Reuters said, highlighted the pressure on legacy brands in the world’s largest car market.
Tesla retail sales in China also nearly doubled in November, from a year earlier, after the automaker cut prices and offered incentives on its Model 3 and Model Y, data from China Merchants Bank International (CMBI) cited by the news agency showed.
BYD retail sales reached 152,863 vehicles from 1-27 November, a nearly 83% year on year increase in average daily sales, according to the data, the report said.
BYD beat VW’s 143,602 retail sales and Toyota Motor‘s 115,272, which were 0.3% and 0.5% lower, respectively, Reuters said.
However, the news agency noted, the VW group still outsold BYD when 36,847 Audis were included.
If the retail sales trend holds for the full month, it would be the first time that BYD, which only began making cars in 2003, has topped the sales charts in China and the first time a company with a line up of plug-in hybrids and pure electric vehicles (EVs) has led the charts, Reuters said.
Automakers had been bracing for a wider downturn in China’s market on the view that the effect of incentives is waning and that the country’s zero-COVID policies have kept consumers away from showrooms and weighed on sentiment as the economy slows.
Overall retail sales of cars produced in China fell 7% year-on-year in terms of average daily sales in the first four weeks of November, compared to the 2% decline in the first three weeks of October, according to CMBI data cited by Reuters.