Japanese car parts makers are the latest to fall foul of Chinese competition regulators for alleged price-fixing.
A dozen Japanese companies have been fined a record amount – the equivalent of 151 million euros.
They include Yazaki, Sumitomo Electric, Denso and NSK.
The regulator said its investigation showed the companies had colluded to reduce competition and establish favourable pricing on their products.
Mercedes, Audi and Chrysler have recently been warned they face fines for overpricing parts and vehicles. Toyota’s premium brand, Lexus is also under scrutiny.
China’s auto sector, which is the world’s largest, is dominated by foreign brands. State media is increasingly accusing global car and parts makers of overcharging customers.
Beijing is intensifying its efforts to bring companies into compliance with the anti-monopoly law enacted in 2008, but legal experts point out it has been used against more foreign multinationals than local companies.
In a commentary published on Wednesday, the official Xinhua news agency said foreign companies saw China’s auto sector as a prized piece of “fat meat”, and that the regulators were acting like a “sword” to protect consumer interests.