Honda Motor on Wednesday said its Chinese car sales rose 31.7% in the first nine months of 2007, beating 24% growth in the country's car market.

According to Reuters, Honda, which makes the Accord, Civic and Odyssey models locally [and exports the Jazz/Fit line], said in a statement that it sold 297,536 cars in China from January to September, up from 225,965 a year ago.

Sales at Guangzhou Honda climbed 12.1% to 208,227 cars while sales by the joint venture with Dongfeng Motor jumped 121.7% to 89,309.

In September alone Honda sold 45,121 cars in the country, up 39.3% from a year earlier, the news agency noted.

A senior Honda executive told Reuters in April that his firm expected to sell roughly 400,000 cars in China this year, up 24% from 2006. It is targeting at least 10% of the China market by the end of this decade, up from around 7.5% last year.