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China wholesales April 2021: Honda teases Volkswagen, Changan surges in market up 8.6%

Honda UR-V sales are up 6-fold year-on-year in April.

According to the China Association of Automobile Manufacturers (CAAM), new vehicle wholesales are up 8.6% year-on-year in April to 2.252.000 units, marking a 13th consecutive month of gains. This leads to a year-to-date tally up 51.8% to 8.748.000 units. Passenger Vehicles are up 10.8% for the month to 1.704.000 units while Commercial Vehicles edge up 2.3% to 548.000, significantly slowing down their growth. Year-to-date, PVs are up 53.1% to 6.791.000 and CVs up 47.3% to 1.956.000. In the Passenger Vehicle detail, in April cars are up 2% to 757.000, SUVs up 17.6% to 821.000, MPVs up 39.7% to 85.000 and minibuses up 13% to 41.000. Year-to-date, cars are up 51% to 3.140.000, SUVs up 55.7% to 3.237.000, MPVs up 56% to 307.000 and minibuses up 31.6% to 107.000. Electrified vehicle sales surge 180% to 206.000 including 171.000 EVs (+220%) and 35.000 PHEVs (+71%). Year-to-date, sales are up 250% to 732.000 including 615.000 EVs (+280%) and 117.000 PHEVs (+140%).

Volkswagen wholesales are down -17.8% year-on-year in April.

After posting a market-beating gain last month, Volkswagen (-17.8%) returns to hell at just 167.000 units, less than 16.000 above 2nd-ranked Honda (+5.3%), VW’s smallest winning margin in a conventional month (excluding Covid-battered February 2021). Gains by the T-Cross (+110.5%), Polo (+95.4%), Tacqua (+68.7%), Santana (+46.8%), Phideon (+58.8%) Magotan (+0.9%) and the new ID.4 CROZZ, ID.4 X and Talagon can’t compensate for freefalls by the Touran (-64.7%), Teramont (-61.3%), Sagitar (-53.7%), Lamando (-48.5%), T-Roc (-42.9%), Golf (-38.5%), Passat (-34.8%), CC (-30.2%) and Bora (-28%). As for Honda, it trails the market but manages over 150.000 wholesales, helped by strong scores by the UR-V (+489.3%), Elysion (+100.5%), Avancier (+73.7%), Breeze (+36.1%), XR-V (+35%), Accord (+30.2%), Odyssey (+26.5%) and CR-V (+17.1%). Toyota (-0.9%) goes against the positive market as solid performances by the Wildlander (+151.3%), Yaris L (+30.3%), C-HR (+19.1%), Camry (+11.5%), Avalon (+10.7%) and Highlander (+8.6%) aren’t enough to tip the brand’s balance into positive.

The Hongguang MINI EV lifts Wuling sales up 211%.

Changan (+53.5%) remains the #1 Chinese carmaker at home with a spectacular gain helped by outstanding results by the UNI-T (+9350%), Benben (+978.3%), CS95 (+391.7%), CS15 (+356.3%), Yuexiang (+71.3%) CS55 (+62.1%) and the new UNI-K leaping to a record 6.608 units. Nissan (+3.7%) only edges up while Geely (-15.5%) is in difficulty. Audi (+22.3%) tops the premium charts above Mercedes (+19.1%) and BMW (+5.9%) with Mercedes overtaking BMW in the year-to-date ranking also. Wuling (+211%) scores the best year-on-year gain in the Top 10 thanks to the continuing success of the Hongguang MINI EV. Haval (-3.6%) is knocked out of the Top 10. Other great performers in the Top 25 include, in ranking order, Chery (+116.4%), BYD (+43.5%), GAC (+52.1%), Roewe (+26.5%), Dongfeng (+41.7%), Tesla (+611%), MG (+33.8%), Hongqi (+50.9%), Lynk & Co (+87.3%) and COS (+69.8%). Two carmakers break their all-time volume this month: SOL (10.468) and Neta (4.015). Following the marketing of these brands as standalone, TANK (#42) and R (#62) now appear in the ranking.

SOL, JAC’s new brand of cars and SUVs, breaks its volume record in April.

Over in the models charts, the Nissan Sylphy (+0.9%) reclaims the top spot it holds year-to-date off the VW Lavida (-12.8%) while the new Wuling Hongguang MINI EV scores a second podium finish in a row at a record #3. The Haval H6 (+16.7%) rallies back up two spots on March to #4, remaining the highest selling SUV in the country. However the Honda CR-V (+17.1%) is just over 3.000 sales below. The Honda Accord (+30.2%) is up 16 ranks on last month to #6, the Toyota Corolla (-22.8%) is in difficulty at #7 ahead of the Changan CS75 (+18.1%), Wuling Hongguang (+27.4%) and Geely Boyue (+17.8%) all outpacing the market. The Tesla Model 3 (+462.3%) is down three spots on March to a still outstanding 14th place. The BYD Song (+623.3%), Chery Tiggo 8 (+171.5%) and Buick GL8 (+351.8%) also stand out. Below the Hongguang MINI EV at #3, the most successful recent launches (<12 months) are the COS X5 (#41), Geely Xingrui (#48) and BYD Han (#63).

Previous month: China wholesales March 2021: Honda, Wuling, Tesla shine in market up 74.9%

One year ago: China wholesales April 2020: Heavy trucks, SUVs lift market up 4.4%, ending 21 straight months of losses

Full April 2021 Top 97 All-brands and Top 440 All-models below.

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