Inicio EV Russian car market dominated by Chinese brands including Li Auto

Russian car market dominated by Chinese brands including Li Auto

Russian car market dominated by Chinese brands including Li Auto

March sales figures from Russia show that Chinese brands now dominate the market holding nine out of the top ten best-selling brand positions with only homegrown champion Lada outselling them. Even more surprising is that one of those brands is Li Auto, which up until now was widely believed not to export cars.

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Russia last year was China’s largest car export market with sales of 841,000 from January to November 2023. According to figures from China Automotive Digital Research Institute this wave shows no sign of abating.

Although sales of Lada far exceeded sales of any Chinese brand, and were up by 64.5%  in March and by 43.2% YOY for the first three months, the increases from some Chinese brands were much higher.

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Great Wall’s Haval brand along with Geely, and Chery all achieved quite close results with sales of 16,045, 15,004 and 13,159 respectively in March.

Haval Xiaolong Max PHEV on display at the 2023 Shanghai Auto Show.

Both Geely and Chery in fact did even better as they appeared on the top ten list more than once. In the case of Geely they also gained the number 9 position thanks to Geely Belgee which is a joint venture mainly controlled by Belarusian state automaker BelAZ (51.5%) and Geely (33.5%) with the remainder held by other Chinese entities. It should be noted though that these cars are actually made in Belarus rather than China.

Chery on the other hand also had entries from the Exceed brand at number 6, Omoda at number 7 and Jetour at number 10. Omoda is an export only brand for various Chery cars first debuting with a renamed version of the Chery Omoda 5 and initially used as a brand in Russia and Kazakhstan.

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The biggest news however on the list is Li Auto a brand which is generally thought of as operating only in China. Li sold 3,617 cars in Russia during March which was a 14971% increase YOY and the brand sold 8.049 in the first quarter up by 19532%.

The  full results can be seen in the table below. These indicate that Russia will likely remain China’s key export market and that sales in Russia should be well up on last year and likely will amount to well over a million cars in 2024.  

Position Brand March sales Increase YOY Q1 sales Increase YOY
1 Lada 39,908 64.5% 90,870 43.2%
2 Haval 16,045 134.0% 37,639 135.!%
3 Geely 15,004 185.4% 36,264 202.7%
4 Chery 13,159 63.7% 31,893 56.4%
5 Changan 9,330 805.8% 20,216 1023.7%
6 Exeed 4,664 38.4% 10,843 49.1%
7 Omoda 4,632 93.9% 10,423 92.8%
8 Li Auto 3,617 14971% 8,049 19532%
9 Geely Belgee 2,732 4,260
10 Jetour 2,616 5,081
Top 10 brands by sales in Russia March 2024

Source: Fast Technology