Biz / Auto

China leads in burgeoning electric car market globally

Government support and the launch of new models have driven China to the front of the line in electric cars, an industry report says.

China now leads the growing electric car market worldwide amid government support and the launch of new models, according to an industry report published by consulting firm AlixPartners today.

Chinese car manufacturers account for about 40 percent of the US$244 billion that global automakers have said they will invest  on electric cars over the next five years worldwide, the report said.

Many Chinese automakers have made inroads in electric cars. Last year, 12 Chinese manufacturers, including BAIC, BYD and Geely, ranked among the top 20 companies based on the range of electric vehicles sold, according to the report.

China also continues to lead by the number of electric vehicles sold at 264,803 in the fourth quarter of last year, accounting for 59 percent of global sales, data from the report showed. 

Next were the United States with 58,390 electric vehicles sold in the same period while 19,474 such vehicles were sold in Norway. Others on the list include Germany, France, Japan, the UK and South Korea

“Government subsidies are driving the boom in electric vehicles in China,” said Marcus Kleinfeld, managing director at AlixPartners. “The government’s expansion of charging infrastructure is another factor.”

The booming electric vehicle market in China is also due to the number of electric car models that manufacturers are bringing to the market. Automakers are launching car models in different categories to meet the demand of various consumer groups.

Between 2018 and 2022, automakers are set to launch 271 new electric car models worldwide, AlixPartners said. European automakers and their Chinese joint ventures will be launching 101 models by 2022, more than one third of the total.

In 2017, there were 84 new electric car models rolled out worldwide, almost as many as in the three previous years combined, data from the report showed.

“More models will be offered in the China market since many new Chinese new-energy vehicle start-ups will launch their products by 2019,” said Xu Qian, China's head of automotive practice at AlixPartners.

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