Ford, GM report first-quarter sales declines in China

Jordyn Grzelewski
The Detroit News

Both Ford Motor Co. and General Motors Co. saw their sales in China, the world's largest auto market, falter in the first quarter of 2022 amid the ongoing global semiconductor shortage and a resurgence of COVID-19 cases.

Ford reported Thursday that it sold approximately 125,000 vehicles in China in the first quarter, an 18.8% year-over-year drop. The automaker attributed the decline to "continued semiconductor shortages and resurgent pandemic-related restrictions," but said the numbers did not reflect its "better-than-industry performance in critical growth segments of luxury and commercial vehicles."

Lincoln, Ford's luxury brand, which recently has boosted its overall performance in China, reported a year-over-year sales increase of 0.8%. Lincoln's sales of 19,400 vehicles marked a first-quarter record, and the brand had its best-ever February, Ford reported.

Ford also noted that three new vehicles offered exclusively in China — the all-new Ford Mondeo sedan, Ford Equator Sport SUV and all-new Lincoln Zephyr luxury sedan — launched in March.

Ford passenger vehicle sales were down 17.3% year-over year, while Ford and JMC commercial vehicle sales of nearly 51,000 units were down 27.1%.

Meanwhile, GM and its joint ventures in China recently reported sales of more than 613,000 vehicles in the first quarter, down from the more than 780,000 sales reported in the same period last year.

GM's Cadillac brand delivered 47,000 vehicles, down from more than 57,000 delivered in the first quarter of 2021. Buick also saw a drop from 224,000 sold in last year's first quarter to about 163,000 sales this year. Chevrolet deliveries surpassed 52,000 units this quarter, down from 64,000 last year.

GM China's Wuling brand reported more than 330,000 vehicles sold in the first quarter of 2022, a decrease from last year's 347,000. Baojun sold nearly 20,000 vehicles this quarter, down from 86,000 sold in the first quarter of 2021.

Twitter: @JGrzelewski

Staff Writer Kalea Hall contributed.