China’s auto market overall grew 5.6 percent in the first six months, with sales reaching 14.1 million vehicles, according to figures released Wednesday by the government-backed China Association of Automobile Manufacturers.
Ford sold just 400,443 of those—the company’s poorest first-half showing in China since 2012. By comparison, General Motors Co. booked a record first-half performance in China, with sales increasing 4 percent to 1.84 million.
While there are no signs yet of Chinese consumers turning against American products, previous backlashes against Japanese and Korean goods suggest Detroit might become a casualty of the U.S.-China confrontation.
“There will definitely be some impact on the Chinese auto market,” should the U.S. impose its threatened tariffs, said Xu Haidong, assistant secretary-general of the manufacturers association.