China auto sales up for 2nd straight month after almost two-year slump

China’s auto sales in May rose 14.5 per cent from the same month a year earlier, industry data showed on Thursday, the second consecutive month of increase as the world’s biggest vehicle market recovers from lows hit during coronavirus lockdowns.

The result followed a 4.4 per cent rise in April and a 43 per cent drop in March, when the pandemic pummelled demand.

Before April, sales had suffered an almost two-year slump.

Sales in May rose to 2.19 million vehicles, showed data from the China Association of Automobile Manufacturers (CAAM), the country’s largest auto industry association.

In May, sales of new energy vehicles (NEVs) fell for an 11th month to 82,000 units, the data showed.

NEVs include battery-powered electric, plug-in petrol-electric hybrid and hydrogen fuel-cell vehicles.

Automakers including Geely Automobile Holdings Ltd, Japan’s Toyota Motor Corp and the U.S.’ Ford Motor Co reported positive China sales in May.

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