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GM's China sales drop 5% in second quarter, underperforms industry recovery

FILE PHOTO: A staff member cleans a General Motors Company (GMC) vehicle displayed at the second China International Import Expo (CIIE) in Shanghai, China November 6, 2019. Picture taken November 6, 2019. REUTERS/Yilei Sun

BEIJING (Reuters) - General Motors Co's GM.N vehicle sales in China dropped 5.3% between April and June from the corresponding period last year, underperforming the industry average amid a recovery from the coronavirus fallout on the world's biggest auto market.

China’s overall figure, which includes passenger and commercial vehicles, rose 4.4% in April and 14.5% in May, said the China Association of Automobile Manufacturers (CAAM), adding that it expected auto sales to grow 11% in June.

GM, China's second-biggest foreign automaker after Volkswagen AG VOWG_p.DE, delivered 713,600 vehicles in the country in the second quarter, the company said in a statement, after reporting a drop of 43% in sales in the first quarter, due to the pandemic.

GM has a Shanghai-based joint venture in China with SAIC Motor Corp 600104.SS which makes Buick, Chevrolet and Cadillac vehicles. It has another venture, SGMW, with SAIC and Guangxi Automobile Group that produces no-frills minivans and has started making higher-end cars.

Sales of GM’s mass-market brand Buick rose 7.8% while Chevrolet dropped 27.7% for the latest quarter. Sales of premium brand Cadillac fell 12%, GM said in a statement on Friday.

Sales of the no-frills brand Wuling grew 9.7%, but those of Baojun tumbled 30.7%.

Reporting by Yilei Sun and Brenda Goh; Editing by Shri Navaratnam and Clarence Fernandez

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