2011 (Full Year) German Car Sales in China and Asia

German premium and luxury car manufacturers had record sales in China and Asia in 2011. China is the most important market for Audi and Volkswagen.

Audi Q3 Trans China Tour 2011
© Audi Media Services

In 2011, China continued to be a very important market for German premium and luxury car manufacturers. Volkswagen and Audi were the stop-selling German car manufacturers in China in 2011. China is now the most important automobile market for Audi and Volkswagen while it is the third most important car market for both BMW and Mercedes-Benz. German carmakers also had a good year elsewhere in the Asia Pacific region with strong growth in the much smaller car Indian market.

Audi – Top Premium Car Maker in China in 2011

Audi car sales in China in 2011 reached a new record high with 313,036 (+37%) new cars sold in China and Hong Kong. China has thus become Audi’s most important market in the world. In comparison, Audi sold 250,708 cars in Germany in 2011.

Audi claims to be the premium car market sector leader in China. Of the 313,036 Audis sold in China in 2011, 57,888 (+89%) were imported and just over 250,000 (+29%) produced in China.

Audi cars produced in China during 2011 included 54,260 (+93%) Audi Q5 SUVs, 84,508 (+52%) long-wheel base Audi A4 sedans, and 113,232 Audi A6 long-wheel based sedans.

China also became the top market for two of Audi’s most expensive luxury models: 19,063 (+70%) Audi Q7 SUVs and 12,425 (+153%) Audi A8L luxury sedans were imported by Chinese buyers during 2011.

Volkswagen – Record Year in China and Asia in 2011

Volkswagen had a very good year worldwide with sales of 5.1 million (+13.1%) cars. Volkswagen had a record year in China selling more than 1.72 (+13.8%) cars in 2011, more than double the number of VW cars sold in Germany.

In the Asia-Pacific region, Volkswagen sales increased during 2011 to 1,93 million (+16.6%) cars. In India, VW had a record year with 76,100 cars (+151%) sold in 2011.

Mercedes-Benz – Record Cars Sales in China and Asia in 2011

Germany’s top luxury car producer, Mercedes-Benz, also had a record year in China in 2011. Mercedes-Benz sales in China increased to 193,339 (+30,6%).  China is thus Mercedes-Benz’s third most important market, after Germany (262,256) and the USA (245,231).

Mercedes-Benz sold 320,603 (+21%) cars in the Asia Pacific region during 2011. These included Mercedes sales in India of 7,089 (+22.7%) and 32,405 (+7.1%) in Japan.

BMW – Record Year Worldwide and in China in 2011

BMW had a record year worldwide (1,668,982 cars +14.2%) with all three of its brands – BMW, Mini, and Rolls Royce – achieving their highest sales numbers ever.

BMW sold 373,613 (+31.1%) vehicles in Asia during 2011. Of these, 232,586 (+37.6%) BMW Group vehicles were sold in China. China thus became BMW’s third most important market after the USA (305,418 cars) and Germany (297,438 cars).

After the buoyant first six months of 2011, record sales figures were always expected for German car manufacturers in China. Although the Chinese automobile market has cooled down somewhat during the second half of the year, the slowdown in sales has clearly affected German luxury and premium car models less than cars aimed at the lower end of the market.

About the author:

Henk Bekker

Henk Bekker is a freelance writer with over 20 years of experience in online writing. His best-selling cars website has been reporting car sales statistics since 2008 with classic car auction prices focusing on the most expensive automobiles sold at public auctions in the past decade. He also owns the travel websites European-Traveler.com and Lake Geneva Switzerland. Henk holds an MBA from Edinburgh Business School and an MSc in Finance from the University of London.