China Spurs Light Vehicle Growth in Emerging Markets

April 19, 2011

jdpower-global-lt-vehicle-sales-apr-2011.jpgShare of global light vehicle sales arising from so-called “emerging” markets has surpassed share from economically mature regions, led largely by growth in the China market, according to J.D. Power and Associates. In 2010, J.D. Power data indicates light vehicle sales in emerging markets comprised 51% of global sales.

Emerging Market Share Set to Grow

Share of global light vehicle sales held by emerging markets is expected to increase steadily to 60% in 2015. Sales in China in 2015 are projected to total 29 million units, followed by the US with just 16.5 million units.

J.D. Power predicts that mature markets like the US, Western Europe and Japan are only expected to return to pre-recessionary sales levels by 2015, and during that period they will be overshadowed by exponential growth in the “BRIC” nations of Brazil, Russia, India and China.

Global Light Vehicle Sales to Exceed 100M in 4 Yrs

Global light vehicle sales are expected to increase 34% during the next four years, from 77 million units in 2011 to 103 million units in 2015. By 2020, global sales are projected to total 125 million units, representing 62% growth from this year’s expected total.

Of this total, the BRIC countries are expected to account for 57.7 million light vehicle sales (46% of the global total). Moreover, each of these countries has high potential for exports, so J.D. Power predicts their combined production should account for an even greater percentage of global output in 2020.

J.D. Power analysts note that while it took approximately 95 years to get the first 500 million passenger vehicles in operation simultaneously (achieved in 2010), with the addition of the emerging markets, it will only take another 20 years for units-in-operation on the world’s roads to exceed one billion.

Light Vehicle Sales Continue Breaking Records

The expected global light vehicle sales total of 77 million will surpass the record of 72 million light vehicles sold in 2010 by about 7%, according to previously published data from J.D. Power and Associates Automotive Forecasting. In turn, last year’s sales beat the previous record of 70 million, set in 2007, by almost 3%.

About the Data: J.D. Power & Associates provided the data and chart used in this article.

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