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China wholesales November 2019: Volkswagen (+12.7%) places 5 models in Top 10, Jetta hits 40.000 sales in 3 months in 17th straight market decline (-3.6%)

The VW Tayron hits a 6th consecutive all-time record volume in November.

New China wholesales endure an excruciating 17th straight month of year-on-year decline but for the 2nd month in a row the dip is the smallest since the market started falling in July 2018 at just -3.6% to 2.457.000 units. This means the year-to-date tally is down -9.1% to 23.110.000 and headed towards a second consecutive negative year. However given the market’s stabilisation in recent months we will allow ourselves a bullish sentiment for 2020 which could signal a return to growth. Passenger cars skid -5.4% to 2.057.000 but SUVs continue to swim upstream, marking a fourth month of gains in the past five at +3.3% to 935.000 units vs. 963.000 sedans & hatches (-10.8%), 123.000 MPVs (-17.8%) and 35.000 minivans (-7.7%). Commercial vehicles continue to post solid scores at +6.9% to 400.000 and are now down -1.6% year-to-date to 3.879.000 vs. 19.231.000 Passenger Cars (-10.5%) including 9.281.000 sedans & hatches (-11.7%), 8.362.000 SUVs (-7.1%), 1.236.000 MPVs (-20.7%) and 352.000 minivans (-13.3%).

“Can’t see no EV bubble bursting!” The GAC Aion S hits the 5.000 sales mark.

The New Energy vehicle bubble continues to burst since government subsidies were drastically pulled back in July, after -4.7% in July, -15.8% in August, -33.9% in September and -45.6% in October, November wholesales implode -43.7% to 95.000 including 81.000 EVs (-41.2%) and 14.000 PHEVs (-54.4%). Year-to-date, New Energy wholesales are now up just 1.2% to 1.042.000, setting the stage for an annual decline come end-December. This includes 832.000 EVs (+5.2%) and 209.000 PHEVs (-10.9%). Chinese brands continue to lose share year-on-year at -12.1% to 800.200 units and a 38.9% share of Passenger Cars vs. 41.9% in November 2018 but equal to its YTD share thanks to 7.480.900 units (-16.9%). German brands surge 15.2% in November to 534.200 and 26% share vs. 21.3% a year ago and 24.3% year-to-date at 4.673.100 (+0.7%). Japanese brands edge up 1.3% to 444.300 and 21.6% share vs. 20.2% a year ago and 21.6% also YTD at 4.153.900 (+3%). Finally US brands implode -28.5% to 152.800 and 7.4% share vs. 9.8% a year ago and 9.1% YTD at 1.750.000 (-23.2%).

The VW Bora lifts its volume record to 38.473.

In the brands ranking, Volkswagen (+12.7%) pushes its domination even further, scoring the only double-digit year-on-year gain in the Top 6 – its first since September 2017 – and its largest monthly volume in almost 2 years (since January 2018) just under the 320.000 mark. The German brand has simply hit a sweet spot where both its sedans and new SUV lineup grow fast in sync: there are 5 VW in the Top 7 sedans in November and 4 VW in the Top 15 SUVs. The Bora (+129%) channels sales from the now-defunct Jetta to post a second consecutive all-time volume record at 38.473 and the Passat (+59.4%) hits its highest volume in 5 years at 26.433 (since the 29.204 from January 2015) with the CC (+261.8%), Sagitar (+28.4%), Magotan (+13.3%) and Lavida (+10.5%) also outstanding. In the SUV aisle, the Tayron (24.781) breaks its volume record for the 6th consecutive month, with the Tharu (15.216) and T-Cross (7.922) also achieving all-time bests and both the Teramont (+77.3%) and T-Roc (+72.2%) surging.

Hongqi aligns a stunning 8th consecutive volume record in November.

Although remaining at very high levels (-1.8%), #2 Honda is below half the sales of VW for the 4th straight month despite excellent performances by the XR-V (+28.4%), CR-V (+8.3%) hitting its 2nd highest ever monthly volume at 24.492, Envix (5.891) and Inspire (5.802) and the arrival of the Breeze (1.734). In third place, Toyota (+6%) posts its 2nd largest monthly volume in Chinese history at 140.674 units, only surpassed by the 158.659 reached last January. This is thanks to the Yaris L (+37%), Levin (+15%), Corolla (+14.2%), Camry (+11.8%), C-HR (+6.3%) and the Avalon still gearing up at a record 9.074 almost one year after launch, and despite the RAV4 (-24.9%) now starting deliveries of the new generation. After putting an end to 6 consecutive month of decline last month, Geely (-2.1%) is back in the red but its best-seller the Boyue (+13.2%) is now back on track thanks to its facelift just as the Binyue (+27%), Vision X3 (+25.9%) and Emgrand GS (+14.4%) remain solid and the Xingyue coupe-SUV breaks its volume record again at 3.809. Nissan (+2.2%) rounds up the Top 5 and posts a timid gain thanks to the Tiida (+58.8%), Kicks (+32.6%) and Qashqai (+17.8%).

Jetour secures a 4th straight record volume at 14.369.

Changan (+23.2%) secures its first double-digit year-on-year gain since April 2018, becoming the best performer in the Top 13, boosted by the CS75 (+126.2%) hitting an all-time volume record at 27.220 thanks to the new CS75 Pro, the Eado (+53.2%) and CS35 (+25.4%). Buick (-26.3%) and Haval (-21.6%) struggle. In the premium race, Audi (+19.3%) surfs on the success of the Q2L (+132.7%), Q5 (+54.3%) and A6L (+19.9%) to bypass Mercedes (+23.1%) in the YTD order, the latter being helped by the A-Class L (+1303.8%) and GLC (+92.8%). After stopping a depressing run of 14 consecutive double-digit drops last month, Baojun (-12%) is back in hell and the “new Baojun” models, more premium, have their work cut out for them, only representing 25% of the brand’s November total vs. 28% in both September and October. It’s a hard job becoming more upmarket in China.

New brand Jetta has achieved 40.000 wholesales in just 3 months.

Further down, Jetta leaps 30.2% on October to hit a new record 16.279 units, with its wholesales mix increasingly leaning towards the VS5 SUV (80% vs. 71% last month) to the detriment of the VA3 sedan (-13% on October). This means Volkswagen’s new low-cost brand has now sold 40.000 units in just three months, making it the most successful new brand launch in Chinese history. The previous record-holder, Jetour (26.363 between September and November 2018) hasn’t said its last word yet: at 14.369 wholesales this month, it aligns a stunning 4th consecutive all-time record volume. Hongqi (+177.1%) does even better with the 12.480 it sold in November marking its 8th straight record volume. Bestune (+72%), now 3-model strong, hits its 2nd highest ever volume at 7.234, with Maxus (+176.8%), Ora (+115.9%), Renault (+85%), Land Rover (+74.8%), Dorcen (+63.6%), Borgward (+62.1%), Dongfeng (+31%), Volvo (+29.6%), Skoda (+18.5%), Mazda (+15.3%), Lynk & Co (+14.7%) and Chery (+13.2%) also in excellent shape. In the naughty corner: Lifan (-99.3%), Leopaard (-98.3%), JMC (-96.5%), DS (-91%), Karry (-89.6%), Zotye (-80.3%), Qoros (-77.1%), Yudo (-75.3%), Brilliance (-66.9%), Citroen (-64%), NIO (-55.2%), Beijing (-51.6%), Chevrolet (-50.4%), Haima (-48.8%), Soueast (-46.6%) and Peugeot (-45.5%).

The Renault City K-ZE already ranks #3 best-selling French nameplate.

The Top 5 best-selling models are unchanged on October: the Nissan Sylphy (-1.2%) secures a 2nd consecutive win, third in the past 4 months and fourth overall but the VW Lavida (+10.5%), still #1 YTD by almost 50.000 sales, lurks only 1.400 units below for the month. The Haval H6 (-23.1%) holds onto the third place despite a ghastly drop, with the Toyota Corolla (+14.2%) just behind at #4 and the VW Bora (+129%) rounding up the Top 5. The VW Sagitar (+28.4%), Passat (+59.4%) and Tayron (+345.9%) also make it into the Top 10 as does the Changan CS75 (+126.2%). Strikingly, all notable volume record-breakers this month are repeat offenders: the BYD Song Pro posts a 5th straight record at 20.038, the Haval M6 a 3rd at 15.890, Chery Tiggo 8 4th (13.549), Jetta VS5 3rd (13.089), Toyota Avalon 2nd (9.074), Lynk & Co 03 4th (7.245), Hongqi H5 5th (5.571), GAC Aion S 7th (5.538), Hongqi HS5 3rd (5.442), Beijing X3 5th (4.953), Baojun RS-3 2nd (4.841) and Geely Xingyue 7th (3.809). One last interesting bit of trivia: the cutthroat-priced Renault City K-ZE (see last month’s Focus on All-new models for more details) is already the third best-selling French nameplate for its 2nd month in market at 1.426 sales below the Peugeot 4008 (1.736) and Citroen C5 Aircross (1.498).

Previous month: China wholesales October 2019: Toyota, Mercedes, Baojun shine, EVs implode (-47.3%) in 16th consecutive market slump (-4%)

One year ago: China wholesales November 2018: Toyota, Nissan Sylphy break records – 5th straight decline (-13.9%) tilts YTD market into negative (-1.7%)

Full November 2019 Top 99 All China-made brands and Top 470 All-models below.

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