In North America, Buick is trying hard to shed its blue-rinse, AARP image. In China, however, the brand’s status is very much revered. In fact, to own a Buick in many aspects, is to know that you’ve arrived.
Perhaps its not surprising then that among the best selling cars in China, Buicks rank right up there. In fact, last year, the best selling model of all wore a Tri-Shield logo, the Buick Excelle, sold stateside as the Verano.
With sales of some 253,514 units (by contrast the entire US Buick lineup sold 177,633 cars and SUVs last year), it clearly indicates that GM’s “premium” division is absolutely going gangbusters in the world’s largest auto market.
Other “global” cars that fared well include the Chevy Cruze (which was the third best selling car in China in 2011) and the Ford Focus, which ranked number 10.
2010’s best seller, the Chinese BYD F3, saw demand plummet last year, ranking as 11th on the best seller list. Recently, the Chinese government passed legislation that aims to restrict the sale of some imported cars in an effort to spur demand for home grown vehicles, which so far have been largely overlooked by Chinese buyers, especially in the premium and luxury segments.
Volkswagen, which was among the longest established and largest presence among Western automakers in China, had no fewer than four vehicles on the best seller list last year, the Bora, Jetta, Lavida and Santana.
[Source: Automotive News]