VDA President Mattes: In China German manufacturers grow faster than the market

Berlin, 24 April 2018

German automotive industry has numerous premieres at Auto China in Beijing – 15th Round Table for China CEOs of VDA suppliers in Beijing – Markets should be opened up soon

“The German passenger car manufacturers are in optimistic mood as they prepare for the Auto China in Beijing. They are bringing exciting premieres to the show. We are also supported by the market. Whereas the overall Chinese passenger car market grew by nearly 4 percent in the first quarter of 2018 to around 6 million new vehicles, the German group brands increased their sales by more than double that rate – 8.6 percent – to 1.28 million cars. That pushed our market share up by one percentage point to 21.3 percent. This shows that our manufacturers’ model offensive goes down well with the demanding customers in China,” stressed Bernhard Mattes, President of the German Association of the Automotive Industry (VDA), in advance of the automotive trade fair that will run from April 27 to May 4.

“Our growth is especially strong in the important SUV segment,” Mattes underscored. Sales of SUVs by German groups had increased by almost 26 percent by the end of March, while the total SUV market added a good 11 percent, reaching nearly 2.7 million units. In the car segment the German OEMs sold over 1 million new vehicles, so their sales grew faster (+5 percent) than the market as a whole (+1 percent).

Since China overtook the US light vehicle market in 2013, the Chinese passenger car market has been the largest in the world. And the market has more than doubled from 11.3 million cars at the beginning of the decade to 24.2 million in 2017. This year the VDA expects the market to reach a volume of 24.7 million passenger cars (+2 percent).

VDA President Mattes took a positive view of the recently announced gradual opening up of the Chinese market to foreign vehicle makers, saying: “That is an important step toward more accessible markets and is a clear signal in support of free competition. This signal should now be swiftly applied in practice. China itself has a major interest in international success, and therefore the equal treatment of national and international companies is a crucial requirement. The country should continue on this path of opening up its own market – in all fields.” For the German OEMs and suppliers, China is not only an export market, but primarily also an important production location. “Improvements in the conditions for investment will strengthen our cooperation and also help China achieve its economic targets,” Mattes explained.

The VDA QMC China (Quality Management Center) has been present in China for more than ten years. The VDA Office China has also existed in Beijing since 2014. At the upcoming auto show in Beijing the VDA is now organizing the fifteenth Round Table of the Chinese CEOs of VDA suppliers. The meeting will be chaired by VDA Managing Director Klaus Bräunig on April 26, 2018.

Eckehart Rotter
Eckehart Rotter Head of Department Press

Tel: +49 30 897842-120 Fax: +49 30 897842-603
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