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Americans have been driving these Chinese-made cars for years — and Biden’s tariffs likely won’t impact them.

A red Buick Envision SUV with black wheels parked in a driveway.

A 2024 Buick Envision Sport TouringGM DESIGN

  • Chinese auto brands are absent from the U.S. market, but Chinese-made cars are still sold in the United States.

  • Americans bought more than 104,000 Chinese-made cars in 2023 and nearly 28,000 in the first quarter of 2024.

  • Buick, Lincoln, Polestar and Volvo all sell cars made in China in the United States.

Of the more than 15 million cars sold in the United States last year, not one was badged by a Chinese auto brand.

Chinese electric vehicle heavyweights like BYD and SAIC are conspicuously absent from American showrooms. With the government’s 27.5% tariffs on cars made in China and the new 100% tariffs announced Tuesday on Chinese-made electric vehicles imported into the United States, the situation is unlikely to change anytime soon.

What some may not realize, however, is that tens of thousands of Chinese-made cars are sold in the United States each year.

Volvo’s S60L sedan was one of the first Chinese-made cars sold in the United States starting in 2016, followed by Buick’s Envision SUV and Cadillac’s CT6 hybrid.

U.S. consumers purchased more than 104,000 Chinese-made vehicles in 2023, up 45% from 2022, according to Automotive News data.

Americans bought another 28,000 Chinese-made cars during the first quarter of 2024.

Currently, Buick, Lincoln, Polestar and Volvo sell Chinese-made vehicles in the United States. Of these, the only electric vehicles made in China come from Polestar, a brand co-owned by Volvo and its parent company, Geely Automotive. The EV brand imported only 2,217 cars in the first three months of 2024.

It’s unclear how the new tariffs will affect Polestar’s future production plans. The company plans to eventually move part of its automobile production to South Carolina in 2024.

In a statement to Business Insider, a Polestar spokesperson said the company was evaluating the Biden administration’s announcement.

Here’s a closer look at Chinese-made cars for sale in the United States.

Buick Envision

A silver 2024 Buick Envision Avenir parked in front of a house.A silver 2024 Buick Envision Avenir parked in front of a house.

A 2024 Buick Envision AvenirGeneral manager

When it launched in 2016, the Buick Envision compact SUV was one of the first Chinese-made vehicles sold in the United States. The second-generation Envision, arriving in 2021, continues to be manufactured in China in one of the factories that GM operates in a joint venture with SAIC. The Envision was Buick’s second best-selling model in 2023, with more than 44,000 vehicles sold.

Last year, Buick sold 167,000 vehicles across its entire lineup in the United States, an impressive 61 percent increase from the previous year. However, this figure pales in comparison to Buick’s sales in China, which totaled 517,000 units last year.

Lincoln Nautilus

A red 2024 Lincoln Nautilus SUV is parked by the sea.A red 2024 Lincoln Nautilus SUV is parked by the sea.

A 2024 Lincoln Nautilus SUVLincoln

The Lincoln Nautilus mid-size luxury SUV was initially launched in 2019 as a mid-cycle refresh of the existing MKX model. This year, Lincoln launched the all-new second-generation 2024 Nautilus manufactured at Ford’s Hangzhou plant, operated in a joint venture with China’s Changan Automobile.

In recent years, the Hangzhou plant produced the Nautilus for the Chinese market, while Ford’s Oakville, Ontario, Canada plant handled the American versions. However, Hangzhou resumed production in the U.S. market when Ford decided to repurpose its Oakville facility to focus on electric vehicles, CNN reported.

North Star 2

The 2024 Polestar 2.The 2024 Polestar 2.

The 2024 Polestar 2.The North Star

The Polestar 2 debuted in the United States in 2019. It was the first electric vehicle offering from Polestar, formerly Volvo’s performance division, spun off by Chinese parent company Geely Automotive and spun off into a standalone company.

Although designed in Sweden, the Polestar 2 is produced at its factory in Chengdu, China.

North Star 3

The Polestar 3.The Polestar 3.

The Polestar 3.The North Star

The Polestar 3 EV is all-new for 2024 and is the brand’s first SUV. Production of the new Polestar 3 began in late 2023 at the company’s factory in Chengdu, China, alongside the Polestar 2.

The first vehicles on the American market will be Chinese-made. However, production of Polestar 3s for the US and European markets will shift to Volvo’s Ridgeway, South Carolina plant this summer.

There is also a Polestar 4 coming to the United States, but Renault Korea will make versions of this vehicle for the American market at its factory in Busan, South Korea.

Volvo S90

A gray Volvo S90 Recharge T8 AWD sedan is parked in front of a concrete building.A gray Volvo S90 Recharge T8 AWD sedan is parked in front of a concrete building.

A Volvo S90 Recharge T8 AWD in Platinum GrayVolvo

The S90, Volvo’s flagship luxury sedan, is produced at its Daqing plant in northern China. Volvo decided, shortly after its launch in 2016, to move production of the S90 from its factory in Torslanda, Sweden, to China. The family variant of the S90, the V90, is still made in Sweden.

Read the original article on Business Insider


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