(Bloomberg) -- Mexico’s car sales are booming thanks to the end of pandemic shortages and the arrival of Chinese models from automakers like BYD, SAIC and Chery, according to Guillermo Rosales, chief of the Mexican association of automotive dealers, or AMDA. 

In the first eight months of the year, annual sales of light vehicles exceeded the prepandemic sales in 2019 by 0.4%. Sales rose 24% in August compared to the same period last year, and rose 2.7% from a month ago, statistics bureau Inegi reported Tuesday.

After pandemic-related supply shortages in 2021 and 2022, “we are practically back to normal, with delivery periods closer to the standard of between three and four weeks,” Rosales said in an interview. The August data, he said, was a “result of improved confidence in the economy, more access to financing for vehicles and growing competition from companies arriving from China.”

Chery Automobile Co. Ltd.’s Mexican model Chirey has opened a new distribution network in the country, he said, while BYD recently began selling to Mexicans and Great Wall Motor Co. just arrived this month. And there is more financing available from firms like Credinissan and banks like BBVA. 

Rosales said that there are still some shortages in hybrid and luxury vehicles, after local plants were operating at half capacity due to a worldwide chip shortage. Electric vehicles represent about 0.5% of domestic sales, with higher costs still limiting demand.

Mexico will report on car production and exports on Thursday. Rosales estimated that the increase will be lower than sales, at about 13%, since volumes had already been rising higher than domestic sales. 

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