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Chinese auto sales take unexpected September slide amidst anti-Japan sentiment

Posted Oct 12th 2012 9:15AM

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China anti-Japan protests

Vehicle sales in China took a sizable dip for the first time in eight months, due largely to the fact that buyers in the country are turning away from Japanese brands. Automotive News China reports wholesale deliveries fell by .3 per cent last month, while Toyota and Nissan saw sales figures fall to their lowest levels since 2008. Meanwhile, figures compiled by Bloomberg indicate Honda had its worst month since May of 2011.

While analysts in China expect market share to shift from Japanese brands to automakers like General Motors, Hyundai and Volkswagen, the Chinese Association of Automobile Manufacturers expects October to be another down month.

Anti-Japanese riots recently broke out in China, with demonstrators targeting Japanese businesses and products with violence. Since then, buyers have participated in boycotting Japanese goods, including large items like cars and SUVs. Sales of Japanese vehicles fell by 41 per cent to 160,000 units last month alone, slicing market share from 20.5 per cent this time last year to 12.2 per cent.

News Source: Automotive News China - sub. req.

Image Credit: Vincent Thian / AP

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