12 Jan 2010

China sells 13.6m vehicles in 2009

1:19 pm on 12 January 2010

China says it has became the world's biggest market for cars and vans, overtaking the United States.

The China Association of Automobile Manufacturers says 13.6 million vehicles were sold within the country last year, the BBC reports.

That compares with just over 10 million vehicles in the US, previously the world's largest market.

China's figures include heavy trucks, which the US total does not, however they added just 650,000 to the total.

That meant China was still comfortably ahead in terms of private car sales, which were 53% higher than in 2008.

Part of the rise was due to moves by the government to stimulate demand, the BBC says, including cuts in sales tax for small cars.