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SAIC Motor Corp Ltd, the listed arm of Shanghai Automotive Industry (Group) Corp, is still the most profitable automaker in China after posting 20.75 billion yuan ($3.30 billion) in net profit for 2012.
The Shanghai-based automaker unveiled its results for the 2012 fiscal year late Thursday, which showed that it generated 478.4 billion yuan in operating revenue last year, up 10.47 percent from a year ago.
However, the company saw a sharp decline in profit growth. Its 2012 net profit grew only 2.6 percent year-on-year, a four-year low.
The nation's largest listed automaker, SAIC Motor sold 4.49 million cars, an increase of 12 percent year-on-year. Sales of passenger cars increased 12.5 percent to 2.98 million units, and those of commercial vehicles rose 10.8 percent to 1.5 million units.
Wuhan-based Dongfeng Motor Group Co Ltd reported a 9.09 billion yuan net profit in 2012, down 13.25 percent year-on-year. The company cited sharp declines in commercial vehicles and Japanese branded cars sales as the reasons behind the lower-than-expected results.
Guangzhou Automobile Group Co Ltd, was also hit hard due to the growing tensions between Japan and China and saw a steep fall in Japanese branded car sales. It said it expected a between 70 percent and 80 percent slump in 2012 net profit.
Three major private automakers had different performances in 2012. Greatly helped by the sales surge of SUVs, Great Wall Motor Co Ltd registered a 66 percent net profit increase to 5.7 billion yuan.
Zhejiang-based Geely Automobile Holdings Ltd also had an outstanding net profit increase of 32 percent to 2 billion yuan, and its overseas expansion also paid off in 2012, with a 157 percent year-on-year surge in overseas sales.
BYD Auto Co Ltd didn't do as well. Its net profit tumbled 94.12 percent to 81 million yuan, dragged down by its solar energy losses, while total revenue dropped 4.04 percent year-on-year to 46.85 billion yuan in 2012.