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China retail March 2024: BYD smashes VW, places 3 models in Top 4, Mazda only foreigner in positive

First Top 10 finish for the BYD Destroyer 05.

The selection of models including in this update drop -6.1% year-on-year in March to reach a retail sales figure of 1,469,639 units. The year-to-date tally is still in positive however at +14.2% to 4,634,280 thanks to a fantastic January result (+68.1%). 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 view of the market as they roughly correspond to registrations to end-customers and are more difficult to artificially boost with exports which can sometimes be the case for wholesales data.

#2 since December, BYD (+28.1%) is back with a vengeance this month, outselling Volkswagen (-17.1%) by a gargantuan 105,000 units. This is the largest gap ever recorded between the two brands. BYD sales a boosted by stellar performances from the Destroyer 05 (+347.1%), e6 (+316.1%), Song Pro (+152.8%), Han (+33.8%), Qin Plus (+23.1%) and Song Plus (+16.7%). Add to this successful launches for the Seagull (25,175) and Song L (4,937). For its part Volkswagen still has some models in positive, including the T-Cross (+102.4%), ID.3 (+98.4%), Teramont X (+86%), ID.4 Crozz (+82.8%), Teramont (+26.9%), CC (+23.4%), Passat (+19.4%) and ID.4 X (+16.6%). But the Lavida (-25.1%) and Sagitar (-22.6%) pull the brand down.

Toyota (-18.4%) falls even faster whereas Geely (+3.4%) manages a slim gain. Tesla (-19.4%) drops significantly year-on-year but still ranks at an outstanding 5th place with just 2 models available. Honda (-34.4%) disintegrates at #6, followed by a solid Wuling (+5.6%). BMW (-19.5%), Audi (-10.9%) and Mercedes (-10.4%) round out the Top 10 and all lose market share year-on-year. Below, Chery is up 9.3% while AITO (+790.2%) continues to post surreal lifts and reaches a record 14th place overall. LI Auto (+113.6%) also doesn’t disappoint, repeating at an excellent 16th place with just under 30,000 sales. Jetour (+96.4%), Zeekr (+66.5%), TANK (+51.7%), Lynk & Co (+29.2%) and NIO (+13.5%) are the other gainers in the Top 20, meaning no foreign brand manages a year-on-year uptick in the Top 20. In fact, Mazda (+37.7%) is the only foreigner in the entire market to enjoy year-on-year growth.

Looking at the models ranking in isolation, like in the wholesales charts and like in February the BYD Qin Plus is the best-seller, crossing the 50,000 monthly retail sales milestone for the first time and stepping up to #1 over Q1. The Tesla Model Y (-13.9%) is beaten again and ranks #2 year-to-date also. BYD places three models in the Top 4, with the Song Plus (+16.7%), Song Pro (+152.8%) and the new Seagull in tow. The AITO M7 (+1661.3%) is down two spots on last month to a still outstanding 6th place, a ranking it also holds year-to-date vs. #104 over the Full Year 2023. BYD also has a further three models inside the Top 10: the Yuan Plus (-14.8%) at #7, Han (+33.8%) at #9 and Destroyer 05 (+347.1%) at #10 for its first Top 10 finish. We welcome the Xiaomi SU7 at #374 with 326 sales.

Previous month: China retail February 2024: Chery, Geely defy market down -16.3%

One year ago: China retail March 2023: BYD widens gap with Volkswagen, market up 9.7%

Full March 2024 Top 118 All brands and Top 662 All models below.

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