Recently, I have been actively following the Chinese automotive market, namely, local manufacturers. I like the approach, the pace of growth and development, as well as the attitude to the product market as a whole — we take the best solutions, do the same, competently reduce the cost and you’re done.
But here’s the paradox, there are at least 17 fairly well-known local manufacturers in the Chinese market, but take a look at the sales statistics for 2018, I’ll attach a screenshot below.
How do you like this state of affairs? VW overtook the nearest competitor in sales by more than two times, I personally have a reasonable question — why?
Why not popular Japanese brands that produce 10 local models tailored exclusively for the Asian market, why not local manufacturers that give low prices, namely Volkswagen?
Before trying to understand “how so”, I want to stop the focus on VAG factories around the world. They have factories all over the world: 14 pieces in Germany, further from 1 to 3 in different European countries, 2 in Russia, only 1 in the USA, 3 in Mexico, 4 in Brazil, 13 in China, and factories of different directions, but everything is a full cycle, they make boxes, engines, electric motors, they assemble cars. In general, nothing surprising with such and such a demand. But this is rather a digression, let’s try to figure out how such demand is justified.
The first thing that comes to mind when you realize the scale of brand localization is that they
Indeed, the prices are competitive, and the models of local manufacturers are sometimes even more expensive, even take Geely in comparison. In China, they love a sedan, so VAG actually cloned the Jetta, making about 4 models, they differ in ICE and pricing policy, some car is as cheap as possible, but the appearance does not betray this, some, on the contrary, gives maximum options. At the top was a screenshot of the TOP 10 models of 18, there are 5 VW models, 4 of which are Jetta and Tiguan.
It is also worth paying attention to the fact that in China, with almost all models, there are 3 boxes to choose from — mechanics, hydraulic automatic and DSG, and in fact many of us say: “give a Tiguan with an automatic, then I will take it.”
But is price the only thing that matters? One of my good friends learned Chinese on his own in his student years and went there for a better life. In 2012, we met on his vacation in the city, asked a reasonable question — “What feeds you in the end in China?” (At that time he had lived there for 2 years).
The answer was simple — «Knowledge of languages». He works as an English tutor, according to him, it is a “bzik” among rich Chinese — to marry a girl with a European appearance, to dress in European clothes. English is taught by everyone and strengthened.
Naturally, this “bzik” has a place to be in the choice of a car. I found several Chinese sites with reviews about cars, I was not too lazy to suffer with reading the automatic translation. In short, many frankly “troll” the local auto industry, write about the low reliability of local cars and the manufacturability of VAG in comparison with the Japanese auto industry.