Detroit is dead – Long live Shanghai!

In the midst of the global financial crisis, all eyes and all hopes of the world’s automotive industry are turned to the Shanghai auto show. This is not surprising, given that China is now one of the most promising automobile markets. Companies that suffer losses in their homeland, earn profits in China. Everywhere where a visitor looks at Shanghai motor show, there is continuous optimism. And despite the fact that auto giants worldwide suffer some losses, the situation is quite different in China. Whether it is Volkswagen, Audi, BMW, Daimler and General Motors – all just talk about the growth and increase of market shares. Head of Volkswagen Group Martin Vinterkorn emphasized that VW was committed to consolidate its position in China. According to him, his group wants to invest in the country of 1.6 billion euros until the end of 2010.


The financial results of VW in the first quarter exceeded expectations of the experts so much, that the company, that has become very optimistic, cautiously forecasts growth throughout 2009. At the motor show in Shanghai, Mr. Vinterkorn introduced the latest versions of popular models of Volkswagen, as the Golf and Passat. Now China is the biggest market for VW. In 2008, the concern was able to sell 1.02 million vehicles here (8.6% more than the previous year). By 2018 the automaker from Bayer plans to double sales volume. Audy company has a similar case. The automaker from Ingolstadt predicts a serious increase in the Chinese market. As the head of Audi Rupert Stadler said, the company expects to increase sales to 200 thousand cars per year by 2015. Last year the company became the most successful one among the producers of premium-class cars in the Chinese market, realizing 120 thousand cars. This year the company is also doing rather well. According to Stadler, «in March record of sales was recorded – 11 800 vehicles, and April was also no less than sensational». At this car show in Shanghai it presents an updated version of Audi Q7.


The main rival of Audi, BMW company has experienced serious shakes in regard with the crisis, but it hopes to remedy the situation by very successful sales in the Chinese market and has high hopes for a stable demand in the Chinese premium class auto market. As the company’s marketing director Ian Robertson said, according to the forecasts of the company sales in 2009 should exceed the ones of the last year (75 thousand cars).

Detroit is dead – Long live Shanghai!