September 4, 2017 / 6:57 AM / 10 months ago

UPDATE 1-Honda again outsells Toyota in China

* Honda China Aug sales up 20.6 yoy, Jan-Aug sales soar 18 pct (Recasts with Honda’s China sales results for August)

By Norihiko Shirouzu

BEIJING, Sept 4 (Reuters) - Toyota Motor Corp’s sales in China grew 13.2 percent in August from a year earlier while smaller rival Honda’s sales jumped over a fifth for the month, keeping intact a trend of Honda outselling Toyota in the world’s biggest auto market.

Toyota, Japan’s No. 1 automaker by volume, sold 108,500 vehicles in August, the company reported on Monday. The jump followed an 11.4 percent increase it posted in July.

Its January-August sales totaled about 841,400 vehicles, a 7.1 percent increase from the same period a year ago.

Toyota is on target to sell more than 1.21 million vehicles this year in China compared to the 1.2 million vehicles it sold in 2016, said a Toyota spokesman in Beijing. He said Toyota plans in part to leverage the relative popularity of compact Corolla and Levin cars.

Honda Motor Co sold 128,671 vehicles in August, up 20.6 percent, following an 11.6 percent increase in July, the company reported on Monday.

Honda’s January-August sales volume totaled 886,641 vehicles, an 18.0 percent increase from the same period a year ago.

Since making a full market entry in China in the late 1990s, except for early years Toyota had generally outsold Honda in China every month and year until last year. Honda has turned the tide, thanks to hot-selling models that include the redesigned Civic and a couple of subcompact crossover SUVs. (Reporting By Norihiko Shirouzu; Editing by Muralikumar Anantharaman)

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