SHANGHAI -- Geely Auto expects to fall short of its 2004 sales target by almost 40 percent because efforts to slow China's economy had impacted car demand more than anticipated, the head of the listed firm's parent said on Monday.
Li Shufu, one of the country's wealthiest men and chairman of Geely Holding (Group) Co. Ltd., told reporters in Shanghai that the auto maker -- which specializes in low-priced cars -- should move just over a 100,000 cars this year.
That's down dramatically from a previously stated target of 160,000 cars, about double the number sold in 2003.
"At present, we've sold about 90,000. Originally, we'd wanted to sell a 160,000 this year, but I expect it will be just a bit over 100,000 now," Li said on the sidelines of an auto forum.
Domestic auto makers have been grappling with decelerating demand and margin-eroding price cuts since mid-2004, prompting Volkswagen to slash investment plans and spurring downbeat estimates from industry executives and analysts alike.
They are plagued also by rapid capacity expansion by local and foreign carmakers, triggering fears of a future glut.