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China Passenger Vehicle Industry Overview, 2017-2021


The passenger vehicle manufacturing industry is under strict regulation of Chinese government in the following aspects. Firstly, there is a strict examination and approval system. Chinese government strictly examines and approves investment projects of whole passenger vehicles and vehicle engines. Secondly, there is a strict catalogue system. Enterprises are able to manufacture automobiles and products can be sold only if they are approved by the government. In addition, the manufacturing of new products is also under strict restrictions. Thirdly, there are polices regulating technologies in the industry. For example, Chinese government puts emphasis on economical sedans that are in accordance to national safety, energy efficiency and emission standards and personal vehicle demands. Gasoline motors must reach Euro III or China IV emission standards. Moderate development of sedan diesel engines, single-fuel combustion engines and hybrid engine systems is also encouraged.

From investment sources, Chinese passenger vehicle manufacturers can be divided into independent brands (Chinese local enterprises), join-venture brands and foreign brands. Foreign brands target at the high-end market; join-venture brands are joint ventures between large state-owned enterprises and foreign enterprises; and independent brands are either large state-owned enterprises or private enterprises. In China's passenger vehicle market, the competition is mainly between independent brands and joint-venture brands. In 2016, in terms of sales volume, leading enterprises in the passenger vehicle industry in China were SAIC Volkswagen Automotive Co., Ltd., SAIC-GM-Wuling Automobile Co., Ltd., SAIC General Motors Co., Litd., FAW-Volkswagen Automobile Co., Ltd., Chongqing Changan Automobile Co., Ltd., etc.

In 2016, the output volume and sales volume of passenger vehicles in China were 24.421 million and 24.377 million, increasing by 15.5% and 14.9% over 2015, respectively. The growth rates were 1.0 percentage point and 1.2 percentage points, which were higher than that of the overall output volume and sales volume of automobiles. The sales volume of sedans were 12.15 million, increasing by 3.4% YOY; that of SUVs were 9.047 million, increasing by 44.6% YOY; that of MPVs were 2.497 million, increasing by 18.4% YOY; that of cross passenger vehicles were 684,000, decreasing by 37.8% YOY. Affected by the preferential purchase tax policy, in 2016, the sales volume of passenger vehicles of 1.6 liter and below was 17.607 million, increasing by 21.4% over 2015 and accounting for 72.2% of the total sales volume of passenger vehicles. In 2016, 10.529 million Chinese brand passenger vehicles were sold, increasing by 20.5% YOY and accounting for 43.2% of total passenger vehicle sales volume. The share increased by 2 percentage points over 2015. The sales volume of sedan was 2.34 million and its market share was 19.3%, down by 3.7% and 1.4% YOY, respectively; the sales volume of SUV was 5.268 million and its market share was 58.2%, up by 57.6% and 4.8%YOY, respectively; the sales volume of MPV was 2.238 million and the market share was 89.6%, up by 19.9% and 1.2% YOY, respectively.