General Motors Hopes To Beat BYD In Plug-In Electric Car Sales In China
General Motors is trying to play catch up in China where homegrown automaker BYD leads the way in plug-in electric car sales.
As blog China-EV reports:
“The Qin and Tang are very viable in Shanghai,” Martin Murray, deputy director, electrification engineering at GM China tells ChinaEV. “That has given SAIC and GM the motivation to compete.”
Qin and Tang hold the top two sales spots in China (and BYD has sold more than 10,000 EVs in each of the last 3 months), so moving in on that territory won’t be easy for GM. Murray believes that GM can make plug-ins that are better than BYD’s offering.
“We are looking at GM technology which has the safety and performance people like, and GM’s affordable models, and putting the two together in China. The object is to make these high volumes. We are going protect these (GM) brands; these are going to be super high-quality products.”
“…the key point is to have affordable (electrified) cars.”
It’s not at all clear from Murray which vehicles GM will electrify for China in the “affordable” category. He doesn’t even hints at a particular model in his interview with China-EV, but the assumption is that batteries will be made locally to keep costs down and that a focus on PHEVs seem to come first before venturing down the BEV path in China.
So, not much to go on, but at least GM is convinced that now’s the time to get serious in regards to plug-ins in China.