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General Motors Outsells Volkswagen in China in First Six Months

General Motors Co. outsold Volkswagen AG in China in the first half, helped by an increase in demand for Buick and Cadillac vehicles.

Volkswagen, which unlike GM includes Hong Kong and Macau in its China figures, today reported first-half sales in China rose 19 percent to 1.54 million vehicles. That compares with the 1.57 million deliveries reported by GM.

The result keeps GM on track to maintain its annual sales lead among foreign automakers in China for a ninth straight year. Both companies count the country as their largest market and have forecast sales of about three million vehicles each this year. They are locked in a race with Toyota Motor Corp. to be the world’s biggest automaker.

Volkswagen, whose stable of brands include its namesake marque and the premium Audi nameplate, joined GM in outpacing the 14 percent gain in total Chinese passenger-vehicle sales in the January-to-June period.

“We plan to keep adding new and refreshed models this year to maintain growth momentum and meet rising demand in China,” Bob Socia, president of GM China, said in a statement.

Both automakers have announced more investments in China to expand production. GM, which broke ground on a Cadillac assembly plant in Shanghai last month, will spend $11 billion in China by 2016 on new plants and products, while Volkswagen plans to spend 9.8 billion euros ($12.8 billion) by 2015.

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