Ford Motor’s China slump intensified, with vehicle sales tumbling 38 percent in June and the automaker recording its worst-ever first half, as buyers shunned its aging models that are awaiting overhauls and flocked to rivals.

The U.S. automaker announced on Friday it sold 62,057 vehicles in China in June, taking its sales for the first half of the year to 400,443, down 25 percent compared with the year-ago period. According to consultancy LMC Automotive, it was Ford’s biggest first-half percentage decline since starting operations in China in 2001.

Ford, which undertook a big expansion in China earlier this decade, is paying the price for a lack of new models in its lineup. Last year, its sales fell 6 percent even as overall vehicle sales in China rose 3 percent.

“We always knew it would be a challenging year for us given our position in the product cycle,” Peter Fleet, head of Ford’s Asia-Pacific operations, which include China, said in a statement...

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