For the longest time, China was closed to any and all Western influences. But ever since they opened their doors to the foreign folks, their influence has been felt in massive waves. The floodgates had indeed been opened.
One of the biggest differences between China then and China now is the sheer volume of cars roaming around the streets these days. Take it from someone who has witnessed the mass congestion of constant swerving and honking horns first-hand.
It’s a classic case study of old-school meeting new school; a blend of the influences of the foreigners infiltrating the walls of the conservative giant nation. It’s a sight to see, really, especially when you chance upon an exotic European car parked in front of a 60 year old Chinese restaurant or a Ferrari zooming past Mao Tse Tung’s poster at the Forbidden City.
China’s sudden infatuation with cars comes as a breath of fresh air for car manufacturers – especially those besieged US brands – that have struggled mightily in their businesses all over the world. A number of US brands, including General Motors – have capitalized on this new and enormous market and it has paid off handsomely in return.
Continued after the jump.
In just a year’s time, GM has seen its car sales in China spike up by 75% and the company is even saying that 25% of their global happen in China.
It’s a trend that more and more car manufacturers are seeking to explore.
Considering that this country is home to one-sixth of the world’s population, it wouldn’t be such a bad idea to start shipping your cars here by the freight load and make a killing in the process. After all, if you’re sales are down in your homeland, China’s the next best place to sell them.
Rest assured, the mass influx of cars in the country is just getting started and it’s not going to end anytime soon.
Take it from Yale Zhang, a Shanghai-based analyst for CSM Worldwide - an auto industry group, when he says that, “"If you want to grow your overall volume, this is where you need to invest.”
That’s probably the best advice car manufacturers the world over will hear in a long time.