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BMW sells more cars in China this year
( 2003-09-03 09:59) (eastday.com.cn)

Bayerische Motoren Werke AG (BMW), the world's second-largest maker of luxury cars, said sales in China in the first seven months of the year surpassed last year's total sales because of strong demand for its 7 Series sedan.

Bmw sold 6,889 cars, including 126 Mini Coopers, in China between January and July, more than double the number a year earlier, company spokesman Ma Qingsheng said in an interview.

Last year, BMW imported and sold 6,677 cars in China.

"The main reason sales grew so fast is due to strong sales of our 7 Series line," Ma said. "We're confident that we can sell 10,000 in China this year."

Bmw, whose second-quarter profit fell almost a 10th, is putting greater focus on China, the world's fastest-growing auto market, where vehicle sales are forecast to triple to 5.8 million units by 2010, according to McKinsey & Co.

Asia's second-largest economy after Japan expanded 8.2 percent in the first half, and many Chinese entrepreneurs are earning enough to afford luxury marques such as BMW.

The munich-based carmaker sold 2,694 7 Series luxury sedans in China in the first seven months of the year, more than triple sales a year ago. BMW began selling the 745 Series sedan in mid-2002. It introduced the 760 and 730 Series to China in May.

Bmw, which doesn't make any cars in China, exports all its 7 Series, 5 Series and 3 Series sedans.

The company signed an agreement in March with Brilliance China Automotive Holdings Ltd to begin making the 3 Series and 5 Series BMW sedans in the northeastern city of Shenyang, Liaoning Province, in the second half of this year. This will be the first time BMW makes cars in China.

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