Chinese Plug-In Electric Vehicle Market

Brian Hicks

Written By Brian Hicks

Posted July 9, 2012

Pike Research just published a report concluding that plug-in electric vehicles (PEV) production in China will not meet the government’s goal of 500,000 PEVs/year by 2015.

According to the report, production will grow at approximately 60% from 2012 to 2017, exceeding 152,000 units per year by 2017.

However, Pike estimates that battery-powered vehicle (BEV) sales will outperform PEVs by more than five to one during the same period.

China’s Energy Saving and New Energy Vehicle (NEV) Industry Development Plan (2011-2020) aims to invest $15.7 billion in order to develop the necessary industry infrastructure by 2020.

China’s reliance on cash sales as opposed to financing plans will be a principal obstacle to quicker growth, the report concludes.

Despite extensive subsidies, PEVs still cost nearly twice the price of a conventional vehicle, putting them out of the reach of many consumers who are acutely attentive to costs. This is especially a problem since many models in the EV bracket are specifically marketed as economic cars targeting middle and low-end consumers.

There’s also unproven EV and battery technology to consider, lack of infrastructure for vehicle charging, lack of consumer-friendly subsidies or credits, unstable electric supply across the nation, and a very large population of low or middle-income workers who don’t necessarily embrace new technologies quickly, says Green Car Congress.

The report calls on the awareness of everyone from auto manufacturers to government agencies and all other industries involved in the electric car market. The problems highlighted need solutions in order to expand the market in the way China’s government desires.

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