SHANGHAI  The steep downturn in the Chinese light-weight-auto current market continued in the very first half of Might soon after April’s slump, with carmakers battling to restart manufacturing and resume shipments amid a new wave of coronavirus outbreaks.

During the 15-day period, retail sales of new mild autos these as sedans, crossovers, SUVs, multi-intent vehicles and minibuses fell 21 per cent yr around calendar year to all over 484,000, the China Automobile Dealers Association reported Thursday.

In the similar period of time, light-automobile shipments from automakers industrywide slumped 24 % to about 458,000.

The primary purpose powering the current market contraction is an prolonged lockdown throughout Shanghai  the most critical car creation centre in China, as nicely as transportation limitations imposed by the city’s neighboring provinces, in accordance to CADA.

Complying with Beijing’s zero-COVID plan, residents and enterprises in Shanghai, the epicenter of the existing wave of coronavirus outbreaks in China, are now in the eighth 7 days of lockdown and journey restrictions.

Even with attempts to restart manufacturing, Tesla Inc.’s Shanghai assembly plant was running at 45 percent of potential as of May possibly 16, according to details the Shanghai metropolis governing administration disclosed at a push conference this 7 days.

The govt did not disclose info on the standing of output at Shanghai-based factories Volkswagen Group and Normal Motors run with community spouse SAIC Motor Corp.

Independently, retail auto gross sales in China jumped 27 % in the initially fifty percent of Might from the identical time period a month previously in an early indicator of recovery for the world’s premier automobile sector, knowledge showed.

April was the worst thirty day period for China’s vehicle market place given that early 2020 as the region shuttered factories to beat new scenarios, hurting logistics and sapping need. In the past handful of weeks, key metropolitan areas have begun to gradually lift curbs.

When down 21 percent from a 12 months before, retail profits of passenger vehicles in the first 15 days of May well rose to 484,000 models, facts from the China Passenger Vehicle Affiliation showed on Thursday.

Product sales throughout the time period May possibly 9 to 15 rose 26 percet from the exact time period in April to 230,000 units, CPCA claimed.

Reuters contributed to this report.