Since the beginning of the year, China's auto industry has obviously recovered, with proprietary auto brands embracing a wave of opportunities in the new-energy auto market. According to the market feedback in the first half of the year, adopting a high-quality strategy and catering to the habit of Chinese consumers have become important factors for China's proprietary auto brands to be gradually accepted and recognized. Despite the “lack of chips”, the increasing price for raw materials, the uncertainties of the market climate, and other factors, most Chinese auto manufacturers remain optimistic.
According to data released recently by the Department of Market Operation and Consumption Promotion, the Ministry of Commerce, China's auto retail sales amounted to RMB 2.2 trillion in H1, up by 30.4% YoY; auto retail sales have contributed 13% to the gross retail sales of social consumer goods. As pointed out by an MOC official, thanks to the implementation of various policies and measures, the auto market has recovered and shown a steady upward trend as a whole, and all main indicators have surpassed the levels before the COVID-19 pandemic in the first six months.
According to statistics of the China Association of Automobile Manufactures (CAAM), the total sales volume of China's auto industry in H1 reached 12.89 million units, up by 25.6% YoY; of which the sales of passenger cars exceeded 10 million, up by 27% YoY.
It is worth mentioning that China's proprietary auto brands have been under the spotlight during the sales recovery. According to the data released by the China Passenger Car Association (CPCA), in the first half of this year, the sales of China's proprietary brand cars increased by 49.2% YoY, and their market share, staying at more than 40% for six consecutive months, has reached 42%, up by 5.7% YoY; among the joint-venture brands, only French auto brands saw a slight increase in market share by 0.1%, while German, Japanese, American, and Korean auto brands a decline by 2.3%, 1.7%, 2% and 1.5% respectively.
From a brand-specific perspective, the total sales volume of domestic brand passenger cars reached 691,000 in June, up by 16.5% YoY, and the sales volumes of BYD, AION, Chang'an, Hongqi, and Chery all increased significantly YoY. The favorable “micro climate” has provided stimulus for the entire industry. In an interview with a journalist from China Trade News, an insider pointed out that, from a macro perspective of the auto market, the increasing demand for new-energy cars served as an important driving force behind the sales of proprietary brand cars. According to the data released by the CAAM, the sales volume of proprietary new-energy cars totaled 1.206 million from January to June this year, up by two folds YoY on a cumulative basis, exceeding one quarter of that in H1. New-energy cars have become the main driving force behind the surging sales volume of China's proprietary brand cars. As shown in the sales tally, China's proprietary auto brands have a great competitive edge in the new-energy car market. Among the top 15 automakers in H1, Tesla has been the only foreign brand, while the Chinese conventional and emerging automakers occupy seven seats for each.
As observed by the reporter, China's proprietary auto brands have achieved remarkable progress in both car appearance and quality, and their increasing market shares are largely attributable to the increasing competitiveness and improving market positioning of their products. For example, ORA has repositioned itself to the individualized needs of female users, and created multiple phenomenal models through creative marketing. The total sales volume of the new model ORA Adora reached 32,000 units in H1, registering a YoY growth by more than two folds; the monthly sales volumes of ORA Hao Mao and ORA R2 also exceeded 1,000 units. In addition, Wuling Mini EV, pitched for the low-end EV market in third- and fourth-tier cities at a sales price of less than RMB 50,000, witnessed a sales volume of more than 157,900 units in H1, securing the top place on the sales tally of new-energy cars in H1. In the medium- to high-end EV markets, the emerging EV makers have shown their great advantages. NIO, Xpeng, and LI, representing the first-tier EV makers, have each sold more than 30,000 units, and are ranked 14th, 16th, and 17th respectively on the sales tally of proprietary-brand cars. NETA, Weltmeister, and LEAP, representing the second-tier EV makers, are also ranked among the top 30.
It is worth noting that all the six EV makers have seen a YoY sales growth by multiple folds. NIO, for example, witnessed a total delivery of 42,000 EVs in H1 alone, increasing by nearly two folds YoY and accounting for 95.9% of the total delivery in the previous year.
In addition, some analysts pointed out that the rise of China's proprietary auto brands was inseparable from the country's solid supply chain system; with a developing auto industry and significant geographical advantages in the Asia-Pacific market, China is becoming the focus of global auto parts giants. This has further completed the supply system for China's proprietary auto brands.
Xu Haidong, deputy chief engineer at CAAM, recently revealed, "The supply chain of China's automobile industry has been complete, and international giants such as Bosch and Continental have set up factories in China. Besides, almost all China's proprietary auto brands have established cooperative relations with these multinational enterprises."
As for the trend in auto industry in the second half of the year, relevant experts indicate that, amid the uncertain international climate, attention should be focused on changes in the supply end, particularly on vital auto components — chip and battery. It is expected that the shortage of chip supply will be alleviated to a certain extent from late September onward. Besides, dozens of new-energy car models will be intensively launched in the second half of the year; especially thanks to the subsidy policy known as “bringing automobiles to the countryside”, China's proprietary auto brands might embrace another wave of opportunities.
(Source: CCPIT/ www. Chinatradenews.com.cn)