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Is China leading the world with a revival in luxury car sales?

This week’s Beijing Auto Show is the first major event in the car industry’s decimated calendar since the Covid-19 pandemic struck.

The Chinese showcase has revealed welcome signs of an industry recovery – based around demand for premium brand luxury models and the latest electric vehicles.

More than 22 million new cars were registered in China last year, a third of annual global sales. Such huge numbers mean the Beijing show, originally scheduled for April, is ideal for manufacturers to gauge whether a recovery might continue to spread globally.

Beijing was the first major automotive show to be postponed by the pandemic, followed by Geneva, Paris and Detroit. The Chinese venue alternates annually with Shanghai and thanks to the rapid growth of the Chinese market, is now one of the motoring industry’s most important shows.

The event usually attracts more than 800,000 visitors to a sprawling site that houses 1,200 exhibitors and almost 800 cars. And while there are 200 fewer stands at the current show, Beijing has proved a good indicator of the direction for one of the world’s key markets.

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