Shanghai Steps Out


First, it’s clear that Auto Shanghai 2009 (closing today) was a huge hit. Attended by up to 90,000 people a day, with a record 1,500 carmakers from around the world displaying cars in the space of 30 football fields, Shanghai was larger than life.

Big luxo cars were again prominent, but so were a multitude of small ones – for example, Chery’s IQ, the Panda Cross, and lots more. Edmunds gives a good rundown of these here, and there are more good pix here. Plenty of oddball cars too, like the Rolls Phantom clone Geely GE, shown below, and the electric Nissan NUVU concept.


The Chinese takeover of the world car market hasn’t happened, of course, but the trend has been clear for a while now. They haven’t got the cash but they’ve got the numbers.

Car sales in China hit a monthly record of over 1 million [units] in March, exceeding the U.S. for the third month in a row. 70 percent of the cars sold in China were affordable models that are 1.6 liters or below. This as most car buyers are paying much attention to their spending habits.

So, the boosters in China are more than happy, particularly about the lowered car purchase taxes (from 10 to 5 percent) that have produced some of the demand. We cheer them on, even in their fractured English:

In any case, a least rousing to observe a present of self-confidence, or a least can observe that the circumstances of Chinese enterprises is not horrid, as fineness, the burden of multiple, just hold back and see!

Regarding the Chinese market, the U.S. will have a lot of catching up to do. How do you think our carmakers can accomplish that?


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