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China retail May 2023: BYD (+99.1%) back in charge, GAC (+115.1%) also impresses

The GAC Aion Y breaks its volume record in May.

We can share with you today All brands and All models retail sales data for China in May. BSCB is the only non-Chinese medium to cover both wholesales (ex-factory shipments) and retail sales data for China so you can get the most complete picture of the largest new car market in the world. Retail sales tend to give a more authentic picture of the market as they roughly correspond to registrations by end-customers and are more difficult to artificially boost with exports which can sometimes be the case for wholesales data. Sales for the selection of vehicles included in this report are up 33.2% to 1,689,491 on year-ago volumes impacted  by covid lockdowns (-22% on the year prior). This means the year-to-date volume tilts into positive territory at +4.5% to 7,288,800.

This month BYD (+99.1%) almost doubles its sales year-on-year to easily reclaim the brands top spot off Volkswagen (+30%). Most BYD models post fantastic scores, including the Dolphin (+353.5%), Destroyer 05 (+205.3%), Qin (+137.5%), Tang (+119.8%), Qin Plus (+119%), Song Pro (+116.5%) and Yuan Plus (+105.8%). Volkswagen trails the market slightly, with its best performing models being the ID.3 (+217%), Polo (+146.1%), Lamando (+97.3%), Talagon (+82.1%), Teramont X (+76.3%), Tayron (+72.4%), Tiguan (+72.4%), CC (+65.7%), Passat (+53.1%), Phideon (+49.2%) and ID.4 X (+45.3%). Toyota (+15.7%) is not far behind with just under 144,000 retail sales. It is helped by solid performances from the Vios FS (+251.2%), Corolla Cross (+144.4%), Front Lander (+122.6%), Vios (+82%) and Venza (+37.7%).

Honda (-4.9%) can’t capitalise on the market jump but remains in 4th place above Changan (+41.5%), Geely (+52.3%) and GAC (+115.1%) all landing tremendous upticks. Wuling (+6.4%), BMW (+7.7%) and Nissan (+7.2%) are a lot more discreet in the remainder of the Top 10. Just outside, Audi (+34.5%) and Mercedes (+33.8%) roughly evolve like the market while Tesla (+320.8%) is on fire at #13. LI Auto (+144.3%) breaks its volume record for the second month running at 28,324 and ranks #18 year-to-date vs. #29 over the Full Year 2022. Cadillac (+109.1%), COS (+103.1%), Hyundai (+66.3%) and Leap Motor (+57.9%) also impress. Denza (+57138.9%) crosses the 10,000 monthly sales barrier for the first time and ranks #31, all this thanks to the success of its new MPV, the D9. Among NEV brands, Neta (-20.3%), Ora (-2.4%), Xpeng (-26.3%) and NIO (-6.4%) cry whereas AITO (+24.2%) smiles.

Looking at the models ranking in isolation, the BYD Qin Plus (+119%) repeats at #1 and lodges its 2nd ever month above 40,000 retail sales. The Nissan Sylphy (+23.6%) is up two spots on April to #2, discarding the Tesla Model Y (+419%). The BYD Dolphin (+353.5%) and Song Plus (+20.2%) make it three BYDs in the Top 5 just as the VW Lavida (+14.3%) falls to #6. BYD also has the Yuan Plus (+105.8%) and Han (+24.1%) inside the Top 10. At #12, the GAC Aion y (+253%) breaks its volume record just under 17,500 units. Notice also the Mercedes E-Class (+105.3%), GAC Aion S (+259%), Toyota Front Lander (+122.6%) also shining in the Top 25. The Wuling Bingo (#25) is the best-selling recent launch but drops 7 ranks on last month. It distances the LI L7 (#41), Denza D9 (#45), Geely Boyue L (#46) and Changan Lumin (#57). The BYD Seagull is up to #60.

Previous month: China retail April 2023: Volkswagen back above BYD, market up 59.5% on low year-ago volumes

One year ago: China retail May 2022: BYD (+164.7%) scores largest YoY gain in Top 20, sales off -22%

Full May 2023 Top 117 All brands and Top 672 All models below.

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