Chinese cars now account for more than 30% of new sales in Russia

Chinese cars could account for 35 percent of Russian sales next year

by brad-anderson

December 13, 2022 at 9:27 p.m.

    Chinese cars now account for more than 30% of new sales in Russia

by brad-anderson

Sales of Chinese-made vehicles have grown rapidly across Russia this year following the exodus of many Western automakers since the war broke out in Ukraine.

As of January 2022, Chinese brands had a 9.6% share of the Russian auto market. This figure has risen steadily throughout the year, jumping to 21% in June, 27% in September and 31.3% at the end of November.

A total of 46,403 new passenger cars and light commercial vehicles were sold in Russia in November, of which 16,138 units came from China. Data from the Association of European Businesses says total new car sales in Russia are expected to reach around 600,000 by 2022.

Reuters notes that Russian-made vehicles mostly suit those with smaller budgets above 1.5 million rubles ($23,961), while vehicles from China suit buyers looking to spend more than 2.5 million rubles ($39,897).

“There is little production from Western car brands and few imports, so the market is split between the Russian and Chinese auto industries,” said Russian auto analyst Vladimir Bespalov.

Both Russia and China are eager to fill the void left by Western automakers. This is most evident with the recent introduction of the Moskvich 3, a set of SUVs that will be offered in both combustion and all-electric versions and will be built at the Russian factory formerly operated by Renault. The Moskvich is a rebadged version of China’s JAC JS4, but the company behind the SUV, KAMAZ, says it aims to increase the number of locally sourced parts used by the SUV starting in 2024 and plans to eventually build an EV using components. Russians and their own universal vehicle platform.

Bespalov believes that Chinese automakers could account for around 35 percent of Russian sales next year and expects around 800,000 vehicles to be sold by 2023.

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