New car sales of Japan's Toyota Motor Corp. in China plunged in September, the manufacturer said Monday, highlighting that its business in the country has become sluggish against a backdrop of semiconductor shortages.

Sales in China for Toyota, Japan's largest automaker, fell 35.9 percent from a year earlier to 115,000 units last month, after decreasing 11.9 percent in August.

Japan's carmakers operating in China are likely to continue suffering from acute semiconductor shortages, triggered by an expansion of coronavirus infections in Southeast Asia, for the time being, some economists said.

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Honda Motor Co. saw new car sales drop 28.1 percent to 121,448 units in China in September, while its electric vehicle business was stagnant.

Sales for Nissan Motor Co. also plummeted 26.2 percent to 104,443 units last month, with the company saying the negative impact of semiconductor shortages is expected to linger at least through the end of this year.