Sales of no-frills brand Wuling grew 26 percent, whereas those of mass-market Baojun vehicles tumbled 19 percent.
“GM’s compact models returned to four-cylinder engines and that helped sales growth,” said LMC Automotive senior analyst Alan Kang, referring to an attempt to market cleaner but noisier three-cylinder versions. “Cadillac also has a more complete lineup this year.”
China’s biggest automakers’ association expects overall car sales to grow by double digits in July-September versus a year earlier. Makers such as Toyota Motor Corp., Honda Motor Co. and Geely Automobile Holdings saw sales jump in the just-finished quarter.
GM has seen its China sales suffer in a crowded market and slowing economy. To revive its fortunes, it plans to have electrified vehicles make up more than 40 percent of new models in the next five years in China, where the government promotes greener cars.
The automaker’s Wuling Hong Guang MINI EV, a micro two-door EV with a starting price of 28,800 yuan ($4,200), was China’s biggest-selling EV in August.
GM’s sales fell 15 percent in 2019 from a year earlier to 3.09 million vehicles. The automaker delivered 3.65 million vehicles in 2018 and 4.04 million in 2017.