In China, the largest car market in the world, fewer passenger cars were sold for the second consecutive year. The number of registrations of electric vehicles is also lower, according to figures from the Chinese trade association.

Last year 25,769,000 new vehicles were sold in China, according to the China Association of Automobile Manufacturers (CAAM). It means a decrease of 8.2 percent compared to a year earlier.

The number of passenger car registrations in 2019 amounted to 21.44 million units, of which 8.4 million from a Chinese brand. Chinese manufacturers had a market share of 39.2 percent last year.

The FAW-Volkswagen joint venture was the largest producer in 2019 with two million copies produced, followed by SAIC-Volkswagen and SAIC-General Motors. Geely and Dongfeng-Nissan complete the top five.

Sales of electric cars are lower

China is also the largest market for and manufacturer of electric vehicles. Reducing government subsidies on such cars in June of last year reduced the sales of electrified vehicles for the first time.

972,000 fully electric cars were sold in 2019, a decrease of 1.2 percent. The number of registrations of vehicles with a plug-in hybrid drive line decreased by 14.5 percent to 232,000 units. With 2,373 units, the number of hydrogen cars was nearly 80 percent higher.

According to CAAM there is as yet no reason to worry. The trade association says the figures are still "within a reasonable range of the basic trend of stable economic growth."

"The transformation and modernization of the Chinese car industry", along with the loss of part of the subsidies for electric cars, also had an impact on the whole, CAAM explains. For 2020, the sector organization predicts a further fall in sales of 2 percent.

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