April 25, 2016 / 8:37 AM / a year ago

BMW expects China sales to rise by single digit percentage

A new BMW i8 plug-in hybrid sports car (R) and a new BMW i3 electric car are displayed during the Auto China 2016 in Beijing, China, April 25, 2016. REUTERS/Jason Lee

BEIJING (Reuters) - BMW (BMWG.DE) expects its car sales in China to rise by a mid-single-digit percentage this year, in line with the overall growth of the world’s biggest passenger car market, board member Ian Robertson said on Monday.

Last year, BMW sold 460,000 cars in China, marking a 1.7 percent rise, said Robertson, who is responsible for marketing and sales.

Growth is expected to accelerate once the long wheelbase BMW X1 is launched, helping BMW to increase the number of locally manufactured vehicles to six, Robertson said.

BMW expects its sales in the United States and across the globe to rise by a single digit percentage this year, Robertson said.

Reporting by Jan Schwartz, writing by Edward Taylor; editing by Jason Neely

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