Vehicle sales in China fell for the seventh straight month in November, according to newly released data from the China Association of Automobile Manufacturers (CAAM) on Friday.
Sales were down 9.1% from the year prior as the industry continued to struggle with what is now becoming a year's long semiconductor shortage.
The country posted total sales of 2.52 million vehicles in November, once again led by sales of new energy and electric vehicles, according to Reuters.
Total new energy vehicles grew 121% to 450,000 units from the year prior, helped along by the government pushing to further rein in pollution. New energy vehicles include battery-powered electric vehicles, plug-in petrol-electric hybrids and hydrogen fuel-cell vehicles, Reuters wrote.
CAAM spokesperson Chen Shihua commented: "Consumer acceptance of new energy vehicles continues to rise. The market has shifted from policy-motivated to demand-driven."
Among the top sellers in China were Tesla, who sold 52,859 vehicles (which we highlighted analyst analysis of days ago) and Nio, who sold a record 10,878 cars last month. Xpeng sold 15,613 vehicles and Volkswagen sold over 14,000 of its ID series electric vehicles.
While still marking the seventh month lower, November's sales beat CAAM's expectations. While semiconductor supply is going to continue to be lumpy, power shortages in China that interrupted production throughout the month are finally beginning to ease.
Recall, we wrote in September that the heads of many auto manufacturers have suggested that the semi shortage "may not just disappear" in 2022.
Volkswagen Chief Executive Officer Herbert Diess said on Bloomberg TV in September: “Probably we will remain in shortages for the next months or even years because semiconductors are in high demand. The internet of things is growing and the capacity ramp-up will take time. It will be probably a bottleneck for the next months and years to come.”
Ola Kallenius at Daimler and Oliver Zipse of BMW also added to the pessimism. Kallenius said that the shortage "may not entirely go away" in 2022, according to Bloomberg. Zipse said there could be another 6 to 12 months left in the shortage.