Arab Today, arab today carmakers rush to satisfy chinas growing demand for urban 4x4s
Last Updated : GMT 12:38:07
Arab Today, arab today
Arab Today, arab today

Car-makers rush to satisfy China's growing demand for urban 4x4s

Arab Today, arab today

Arab Today, arab today Car-makers rush to satisfy China's growing demand for urban 4x4s

A visitor takes photos of a Land Rover
Shanghai - AFP

Car manufacturers are targeting the Chinese appetite for "crossover" vehicles, 4x4s suitable for urban terrain being snapped up by status-conscious consumers as automakers fight for sales in an otherwise slowing market.

China's premier auto show, which opened in Shanghai this week, is all about sports utility vehicles (SUVs) -- sales of which soared 49 percent on year in the first quarter while growth in the rest of the Chinese market was cooling.

More than four million vehicles out of the more than 20 million produced in China in 2014 were SUVs, a number expected to rise to seven million in 2018 and continue to grow, according to analyst group IHS.

Now ubiquitous in Shanghai, these cars -- which are raised higher off the ground than sedans but lack the all-terrain pretensions of real adventure vehicles -- can be found on the stands of both big Western manufacturers and local brands.

Seen as a sign of elevated social status, they are challenging the prevalence of the sedan.

"In Europe, crossovers are trying to muscle in on the market share taken by family minivans, while in China they're doing the same with sedans," said Flavien Neuvy, head of Paris' Observatoire Cetelem, a market analyst group.
Statistics from the China Association of Automobile Manufacturers show that local carmakers' SUV sales doubled in the first quarter from the same period the year before, but their market share only went up by 16 percentage points, suggesting vast room for growth.

Francois Jaumain, an automobile consultant with PwC, said the popularity of the vehicles can be gauged by the fact that this year "we see no fewer than 20 compact SUVs launched on the market by Chinese manufacturers, excluding joint ventures".

"This shows the preference of consumers in the large cities, and also consumers in the newer cities, which are the real source of growth for the automobile market in the country," he said.

- Distinguish yourself -

The most popular Chinese-brand SUV in the first quarter was the JAC Refine S3, with prices starting at about 66,000 yuan ($10,650), according to trade websites, much cheaper than foreign models.
The new version of Volkswagen's Tiguan, meanwhile, starts in China at just under 200,000 yuan, according to the automaker's website.

Still, Western manufacturers, hungrier than ever for a slice of the Chinese market, which is already the biggest in the world overall and expected to surpass the United States in SUV sales too.

"By 2018, China is expected to be the biggest market in the world for SUVs," John Lawler, chairman and CEO of Ford Motor China, told a news conference.

Compact SUVs have also been growing in popularity in the United States, where their market share rose to a record 12.8 percent so far in 2015, according to Edmunds.com data.

Volkswagen, the biggest foreign manufacturer in China, is equally positive.

"We will as well come in the near future with additional (SUV) models," said Jochem Heizmann, Volkswagen Group China's president and CEO.

"We're not only talking about the budget SUV segment, we're talking about different sizes. Smaller SUVs, bigger SUVS, premium SUVs."

On the French side, Citroen saved the unveiling of its "Aircross" concept car, which has a raised, rounded shape, for the Shanghai show.

The dynamic market for urban 4x4s in China was one of the reasons Citroen -- which has a quarter of its sales in the country -- chose to unveil the model in Shanghai, Citroen CEO Linda Jackson told AFP.

"In December, we launched a little SUV, the C3-XR. Three months later, we had already sold more than 14,000 models. The SUV market adapts very quickly here," she said.

Just next door, Renault showed off its small crossover Captur and its big brother, the Qajar. It plans to open its first Chinese manufacturing plant by the end of the year and is hoping that sale of its crossovers will account for 3.5 percent of the market in the medium term -- or 700,000 models a year.

SUVs are popular in China for the same reasons as in the US and Europe: "higher-seating, the feeling of security, the car's flexibility, and its adaptation to difficult conditions," according to Volkswagen's Heizmann.

And there is another element, Neuvy of the Observatoire Cetelem, contends -- buyers' desire to distinguish themselves from the masses.

"The Chinese fleet is less than five years old, and we are now beginning to see first-time buyers who change their car, and who want a model more in line with their tastes."

 

Name *

E-mail *

Comment Title*

Comment *

: Characters Left

Mandatory *

Terms of use

Publishing Terms: Not to offend the author, or to persons or sanctities or attacking religions or divine self. And stay away from sectarian and racial incitement and insults.

I agree with the Terms of Use

Security Code*

Arab Today, arab today carmakers rush to satisfy chinas growing demand for urban 4x4s Arab Today, arab today carmakers rush to satisfy chinas growing demand for urban 4x4s

 



Arab Today, arab today
Arab Today, arab today Prepares to present her new collection

GMT 14:29 2017 Monday ,20 February

Prepares to present her new collection
Arab Today, arab today Tourism shows signs of recovery

GMT 09:59 2017 Monday ,20 February

Tourism shows signs of recovery
Arab Today, arab today Sarah Belamesh designs antiques of "ceramic"

GMT 19:45 2017 Monday ,20 February

Sarah Belamesh designs antiques of "ceramic"
Arab Today, arab today 11 family members dead in rebel push

GMT 07:57 2017 Tuesday ,21 February

11 family members dead in rebel push
Arab Today, arab today To probe sexual harassment claims

GMT 10:08 2017 Tuesday ,21 February

To probe sexual harassment claims
View News in Arabic - Business: اقتصاد دولي
Arab Today, arab today
Arab Today, arab today
Arab Today, arab today Kidogo provides childcare for underserved

GMT 20:24 2017 Wednesday ,15 February

Kidogo provides childcare for underserved
Arab Today, arab today 63-Year-Old Woman Delivers Baby

GMT 12:35 2017 Tuesday ,21 February

63-Year-Old Woman Delivers Baby
Arab Today, arab today London to tax old cars

GMT 14:06 2017 Friday ,17 February

London to tax old cars
Arab Today, arab today Pluto's unruly moons

GMT 06:31 2015 Thursday ,04 June

Pluto's unruly moons
Arab Today, arab today Nissan enhances sales in most markets

GMT 14:08 2017 Monday ,20 February

Nissan enhances sales in most markets
Arab Today, arab today Competes Sweden and Germans by S90

GMT 22:36 2017 Thursday ,16 February

Competes Sweden and Germans by S90
Arab Today, arab today Ahmed Fahmy stresses he did not ignore singing

GMT 06:34 2017 Sunday ,19 February

Ahmed Fahmy stresses he did not ignore singing
Arab Today, arab today Teach monkeys to recognize themselves in mirror

GMT 20:41 2017 Wednesday ,15 February

Teach monkeys to recognize themselves in mirror

GMT 21:11 2017 Saturday ,18 February

Egypt to hold first session of Arab film festival

GMT 06:50 2017 Wednesday ,15 February

Tragic fluctuations of Bakhtiari's life revealed

GMT 19:10 2017 Friday ,17 February

Hats, scarves add beauty to women

GMT 10:26 2017 Tuesday ,14 February

Emergency UN meeting in Harare

GMT 23:29 2017 Thursday ,16 February

Home built on sand castles-style costs $8m

GMT 14:51 2017 Monday ,20 February

Ways to acquire presentation skills

GMT 19:16 2017 Friday ,17 February

Aziz House ready to host the tourists

GMT 13:12 2015 Saturday ,09 May

Sheikh Sultan opens Sharjah Centre

GMT 12:39 2017 Monday ,20 February

newest smartphone another winner for Huawei

GMT 13:16 2017 Tuesday ,14 February

First fashion model with Down syndrome
Arab Today, arab today
Arab Today, arab today
 
 Arab Today Facebook,arab today facebook  Arab Today Twitter,arab today twitter Arab Today Rss,arab today rss  Arab Today Youtube,arab today youtube  Arab Today Youtube,arab today youtube
arabstoday arabstoday arabstoday arabstoday
arabstoday arabstoday arabstoday
arabstoday
بناية النخيل - رأس النبع _ خلف السفارة الفرنسية _بيروت - لبنان
arabstoday, Arabstoday, Arabstoday