Electric commercial vehicles are becoming more and more popular in many places around the world, especially on shorter urban delivery duties, and China is no exception. According to a new report, the sales of battery-powered light commercial vehicles have increased from under 1 percent in 2020 to around 10 percent of all segment sales this year, and this could start to have an impact on global oil demand.
And according to this report published on Bloomberg, the trend shows no sign of stopping - more and more vans and small pickups in the country are being bought with electric power, and this will slowly expand to larger trucks as they become competitive and start arriving in the People’s Republic - right now there aren’t that many widely available medium- or heavy-duty EVs on sale in China, but that is expected to change very soon as local manufacturers get in on the action.
But even with the lack of available larger electric trucks, the source report reveals that while electric semi truck sales were virtually zero two years ago, today BEV semis account for 3.4 percent of the market, and again the trend is only expected to continue and accentuate. They still can’t match the range of their diesel-burning counterparts, so they are almost exclusively being used for short-haul routes around cities.
However, as battery technology continues to progress, this will make electric trucks suitable for an increasing number of roles for longer haul jobs. In China they are also embracing battery swapping not only for passenger cars, but trucks and vans too. The country will have some 34,000 commercial EVs with swappable batteries on the road in the near future.
Data says China saw a 318 percent increase in the number of battery swapping stations and yet more are still planned. This will all have an impact on global oil prices, also driven by the increasingly larger share of new electrified vehicles being bought in China (many of which also support battery swapping) - such vehicles currently make up 22 percent of new car sales in the PRC and the trend shows no signs of slowing down.