China’s passenger vehicle sales fall 14.1% in Jan m/m

BEIJING, (Reuters) – China’s passenger vehicle sales shrank 14.1% in January from the prior month, the first such slide since August, data from the China Passenger Car Association (CPCA) showed on Thursday.

Sales totalled 2.05 million units, up 57.1% from a year earlier.

Battery electric vehicle sales sagged 37% in January from the month before, far below expectations, a main source of pressure on auto market growth, said Cui Dongshu, the association’s secretary general.

A price war among automakers will remain fierce in 2024, Cui predicted. More than 40 brands joined the price war that was triggered by Tesla in China throughout 2023.

Demand faltered in the world’s largest auto market despite a renewed discounting push led by Tesla at the start of 2024.

Reporting by Qiaoyi Li, Zhang Yan and Brenda Goh; Editing by Muralikumar Anantharaman