vw-lavida

The headline above is the answer to which brands made the sales podium in China last year. Volkswagen dominating the world’s largest car market is no surprise, given its long presence and strong branding there, but coming in a (distant) second is the Korean brand Hyundai. Foreign marques accounted for the top eight spots in 2013, according to IHS Automotive.

Volkswagen sales rose nearly 17% to 2.4 million units. Korean rival Hyundai saw even more growth – nearly 20% – to just over one million vehicles, while Toyota grew 15% to 858,000 units. Overall sales of light vehicles in China rose 14% in 2013, so each of the top three outperformed the market.

In the battle of the giant groups, Volkswagen Group edged out General Motors in total sales. GM’s top brand in China last year was Buick (fifth), followed by Chevrolet in seventh. They sandwich Nissan in sixth. Ford, which recorded an amazing 62% sales growth, finished the year in eighth.

The Blue Oval’s third-gen Focus sedan was the best selling car in the dominant compact sedan market, ahead of stalwarts VW Lavida (pictured above) and Buick Excelle.

Where are the local Chinese brands, you ask. Great Wall leads the domestic charge in ninth place, ahead of BYD (11th), Chery (13th) and Dongfeng (16th).

Top five brands in China, 2013
Volkswagen 2,395,695
Hyundai 1,030,708
Toyota 857,749
Nissan 842,847
Buick 807,769

Top five compact sedans in China, 2013
Ford Focus 403,640
VW Lavida 374,056
Buick Excelle 296,183
Toyota Corolla 294,401
Chevrolet Sail 276,242

To find out who sold how many in Malaysia last year, see MAA’s vehicle production and sales data for 2013.