Following the release of data from the China Association of Automobile Manufacturers (CAAM) that showed total vehicle sales in China last year declined by just 1.9% to 25.3 million units;
David Leggett, Automotive Analyst at GlobalData, a leading data and analytics company, offers his view:
“Sales of electric cars are picking up especially strongly in China’s automotive market recovery that gathered pace in the second half of last year.
“Sales of new energy vehicles (NEVs – battery electric vehicles and plug-in hybrids) jumped by almost 50% to 248,000 units in December and by close to 11% to 1.367 million units over the full year – including 1.116 million fully electric vehicles and 251,000 plug-in hybrid vehicles.
“China is by far the largest market for electric vehicles globally and its prominence is expected to grow in the coming years.
“Beijing has put a number of subsidies in place for NEVs until the end of 2022, including an exemption from the 10% sales tax, to help drive demand. Municipal governments and state-state-owned enterprises are also being urged to drive EV sales up.
“In addition, consumers are seeing a wider range of EV models, specifications and prices, while rising volumes also mean the cost of key components such as batteries is coming down.
“Premium brands such as Tesla, Xpeng and Nio have helped raise the overall image of the electric vehicle segment in China and still account for most sales, but smaller, low-cost EV models from local manufacturers – such as the Shanghai-GM-Wuling Hong Guang MINI EV – are contributing very significantly to recent market growth.”