Sales Of Plug-in Electric Vehicles In China Up In September Nearly 80%

OCT 24 2017 BY MARK KANE 41

Sales of New Energy Vehicles in China – September 2017

By looking at the results so far this year in China, it is hard to not notice the upward climb in plug-in vehicle sales. For September, deliveries increased by 79% to 78,000!

Once again, that is 78,000 plug-in sales…in a single month.  More than the rest of the world achieved combined last month.

Sales of New Energy Vehicles in China – September 2017

Breakdown on the sales by category:

  • BEVs: 64,000 (up 83.4%)
  • PHEVs: 14,000 (up 61.9%)

Looking ahead to the rest of 2017, we should see back-to-back record monthly sales results in November and December, as the last couple of months of the year in China are typically best ones.

So far this year, sales of New Energy Vehicles (plug-ins) in China have reached 398,000 (up 37.7%).  If it wasn’t for the government butchering the incentives at the start of 2017 (ain’t slow moving, bureaucratic red tape great?), then we likely would have already seen 500,000 sold in the region.

Inside the numbers, the plug-in you probably have never heard of, set another single month sales record.  The BAIC EC-Series (EC 180) sold 8,419 copies in September, after notching almost 7,000 sales in August.  The Zhidou D2 EV came in 2nd with 5,084 sales, while the BYD Song EV recorded 3,745 registrations.

…and yes, thanks to the last ~60 days of sales, the BAIC EC will be the top selling plug-in vehicle globally in 2017, standing at 37,152 registrations after the first three quarters.

BAIC is the first automaker to sell “more than 8,000” of something that plugs in for a single country!

We should note that CAAM reports sales of all kinds of road legal vehicles with a plug-in powertrain (for example buses), but a large majority is still passenger light vehicles…not that an all-electric bus should be counted/considered less than a passenger EV (it should probably be counted as more valuable).

China Association of Automobile Manufacturers states:

“In September, the production and sales of new energy vehicles reached 77 thousand units and 78 thousand units respectively, increasing 79.7% and 79.1% year on year. To be specific, the production and sales of BEV both reached 64 thousand units, increasing 85.2% and 83.4% year on year; and such figures for PHEV were 13 thousand units and 14 thousand units, increasing 57.6% and 61.9% year on year.

For the first nine months, the production and sales of new energy vehicles reached 424 thousand units and 398 thousand units respectively, increasing 40.2% and 37.7% year on year. To be specific, the production and sales of BEV reached 348 thousand units and 325 thousand units, increasing 51.6% and 50.1% year on year; and such figures for PHEV were 76 thousand units and 73 thousand units, increasing 4.0% and 0.6% year on year.”

Sales of New Energy Vehicles in China – September 2017

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41 Comments on "Sales Of Plug-in Electric Vehicles In China Up In September Nearly 80%"

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Nonsense Acronyms World


BTW, NEV means “Neighborhood Electric Vehicle” and not “New Energy Vehicles”.

In the US, yes. But in China, the acronym means what the author wrote 🙂

Nope… start getting used to LSEV (low speed electric vehicle) instead.

NEV is new energy vehicle. Largest market and most power decides, and that is China.

It is also an acronym used by all car companies since China is the largest car and EV market and because the US LSEV’s (that you call NEVs) are irrelevant.

Just update the acronym meaning in your mental library and you will be fine.

WOW! I sometimes refer to myself as a Grammar Nazi, but that’s intended as a joke. You’re actually serious about it!

Last time I looked, they were using Chinese in China… and not English. Also, last time I looked, China doesn’t get to dictate to other countries what words and acronyms mean.

I rather doubt the Grammar Gestapo are gonna come and arrest me if I continue to use the term “NEV” in its original meaning for discussions of EVs; the original meaning of “Neighborhood Electric Vehicle”. I also doubt the Grammar Gestapo will break down my door if I choose to use the acronym AEV, or Alternative Energy Vehicle, for what translators of Chinese into English confusingly call “NEVs” in translations of Chinese news.

That those translators didn’t realize “NEV” was already in use as an acronym in English discussions of EVs, shows ignorance on their part. Hopefully they will come to realize that and start using “AEV” instead.

You can do it the right way or your way…. it’s up to you.

Yes, and while we’re at it, ‘EV’ stands for a plain and simple ol’ ‘electric vehicle’ and NOT anything that has a wazzing exhaust pipe!

Do we know the sales for Tesla Models S and X for September in China? Tesla has been running at ~8 % of BEV sales.

I think so. this is a good video in regards to Tesla in China:

~1000 units and more like ~4% than ~8%.

The GOP let China become the leader in building and installing Electric Vehicles, Wind Power, and Solar to protect there interest in fossil fuels.700,000 electric vehicles in China this year amazing.
Some use the excuse that they don’t believe in global warming to protect fossil fuels in the GOP

They didn’t let anything. This was inevitable unless you want to work for $1/hour. They could help US companies now with a BAT tax but likely won’t happen…as always, the consumer will get screwed.

The GOP is against Electric Vehicles and anything renewable. Florida is the Sunshine State and FPL works against letting residents have solar panels on roof tops. Ohio wants stop wind energy, Illinois had to give utilities money to keep open nuclear plants Clinton and Quad citiets because they said they couldn’t compete.


Last time I had checked, you can have all the solar you may want on your roof in Florida. There is even a law that homeowner associations can’t forbid it.

FPL may had tried to lobby to restrict subsidies non-solar customers pay to solar ones in the form of 10-12 cnt/kWh buy-in price. This is unreasonable price now in 2017. The same FPL builds their own big solar fields and gets the same solar energy at the same time for much lower price. And it isn’t like FPL gets money from sky as some entitled subsidy receivers imagine. FPL just collects whatever money they need to maintain the grid and backup power generators from all the customers, like any utility.

I saw a video where he guy was saying he had to have an ice car too, since the charging infrastructure was so poor he could not make the long trips he needed too.
He could not get another ice license, take years, if ever, with the lottery system, so he got an ev, just like that.

I think that is why China wants Tesla in so badly. It’s politics as they can point to that as an example how they are going to prod the ev revolution along, but it is also practical for then Tesla is likely to pick up the pace in fleshing out their SC network there, which is what China desperately needs.

They have just completed one station that has 50 supercharger stalls in Shanghai

China has no problem to set up a cross country highway fast charging network. In fact, such a network already exists. It’s just much slower than a supercharger and some EVs are not compatible, but that’s a standard/electricity supply problem. Nothing Tesla could solve.

I’m curious how many of the total are the equivalent of NEVs / EU Quadricycles (generally speaking, BEVs running <45mph) and so wouldn't be road legal on limited-access highways.
Atany rate, the BAIC EC180 doesn't seem to be one of those; while its acceleration is mediocre, it does have a top speed of 120+ km/h and 25kWh battery/~130km for real AER .

I think comparing wont work as u suggested.
IN china they travel in kmph mpg their local speeds are less compared to US. NEV what we say here are main cars there. they replace a 800cc car instead of 2000cc Honda civic here.

even quad cycle if its main vehicle used every day replacing gas car that counts


None of these cars are NEVs in the classic sense (neighbourhood/low speed vehicles). Only counted are highway legal, full safety offerings.

If the list included low-speed, plug-in transportation, the number would be much…much higher.

Thanks for the clarification! I misremembered for some reason.
So even more impressive.
Looks to me like the lower-end non-Chinese carmakers should be shaking in their boots. Once Chinese vendors hit the internal % marketshare targets, they’ll start seriously looking at exporting their EVs… the non-Chinese might not be able to compete, at least at the low/mid end of the market.

BYD will likely be the first to start selling in earnest outside of China/in the US, as they build a product today with future expansion markets in mind.

Once upon a time they had intentions of coming to the US, but as they ended up being about ~18 months slow with the E6, they got a little preview of the US market reality in 2011/2012 (which turned out to be about 1/5th expectations), and decided to shelf US expansion until a later date rather than commit profit suicide. Instead, a focus on eBuses and commercial trucks in the meantime.

We haven’t had any official dates on a re-entry for light vehicles, but we do have some good relationships with the company, and unofficially we have heard ~2019 as a return target date for a couple years now (which would make sense when one is thinking about the US plug-in expansion today, and the ZEV requirements that start coming into play in 2018).

They already are – busses. They have at least 5 ‘factories’ (or assembly plants) that I know running or in the pipe-line outside China already; UK, Hungary, France, US (more than 1?) and Ecuador (and probably lots more besides). They also have a US$150m PV module factory in Brazil. Their share price has gone up 6-fold in 18 months, as well! ; )

Yeah, BYD makes sense, as does a 2019 timeframe. As Martin says, they already have presence, both assembly & marketing, in Europe & the US, and while it’s focused on a the different bus market, it’ll certainly help.

They’re also consistently, IIRC, the largest car EV maker globally in terms of units.

I wasn’t aware of this, but they already have EU homologation for the E6 (a 200mi MPV/CUV); they apparently already have small fleets as taxis in several US cities, so they may have US homologation as well.

If they manage to price it low enough in the West, they could sell pretty well.

Jay, Good on you for having contacts there!

The BYD e6 is a bit laughable, styling stolen from the Honda Odyssey minivan, and specs for battery capacity and range that BYD twice reduced before withdrawing the car from US sale.

“Also note there are BYD E6 taxi fleets in several US cities already”
Where and how many exactly? BYD always bragged about the huge e6 taxi fleet in Shenzhe as evidence of its BEV prowess, except Shenzhen is BYD’s headquarters and it is part-owner of the taxi company!

So they had a credibility problem, though nothing like VW. I hope BYD does really well with buses and trucks in the USA, I think its Lancaster California plant is for real.

BYD sold 21,000 e6 in China in 2016 and it’s the biggest-selling BEV in China according to Wikipedia, implying PHEVs are the majority of plug-in sales in China. I hope most are driving electric miles.

As I understand it, China doesn’t have a separate regulatory category for NEVs (and thank you, Wavelet, for using the term “NEV” correctly!). There is much more of a spectrum in China, with some of their EVs being NEVs, others fully highway capable with a top speed of 85+, but with other EVs in the middle with top speeds of around 50-60 MPH.

I’m glad I never had to drive in China! 😯

“I’m curious how many of the total are the equivalent of NEVs / EU Quadricycles (generally speaking, BEVs running <45mph) and so wouldn't be road legal on limited-access highways"

Only highway-capable cars are counted. Some may be just barely so, the Zhidou D2 I think tops out at 85km/h .

Exactly 0,0%. To be counted as a NEV the BEVs need a minimum range of 100 km and a minimum top speed of 100 km/h.

A very interesting read for anyone interested in Chinese EV policy.

Interesting, thanks Mikael!

Well, that certainly helps explain why so many Chinese-make AEVs* have such inflated claims for top speed and range!

*Alternative Energy Vehicles, an acronym I use to avoid confusion with “NEV”, which means “Neighborhood Electric Vehicle” everywhere except in English translations of news about Chinese EVs.

It means that nowhere but in the US. And I know it’s hard for you guys to change, but at least you can try.

In a few hundred years you might even have the metric system.

It is told that there are over 200 millions of e-bikes/scooters in China. They provide the same commuting function to their owners using much less resources (e.g. around 1000 mpg) and limited street space than cars.

But they are used by lower income population, so they don’t get any subsidies nor are glorified by media as some “ev revolutionaries”. On the contrary, are pushed out of city centers :/

Anyone knows what percentage of total sales this represents?

2.3426M passenger car sales.
0.078M plug-ins.

Note September 2016 had 2.2683M passenger car sales, so September 2017 was an increase of 0.0757M. So, if all counted in passenger cars, the increase in PEV sales of 0.0344M would account for 45% of the increase.

59 000 passenger EV sales (the rest are buses/trucks etc) out of 2 342 600 total passenger car sales equals 2,5%

For the whole year it’s ~1,8%.

Not quite sure where this 59,000 number came from? We have ~73,600 light vehicle domestic sales (over some ~200 different offerings), the rest buses/trucks.

I think perhaps you are looking at a partial tally?

It comes from the EV-sales blog. Considering that there are closer to 150k electric buses being sold per year in China it is very very unlikely that only 4 000 buses (and trucks) are being sold in a month.

China is never super transparent though so the margin for error is always big… 🙂

Hi, any idea why a sharp drop of sale in Jan 2017?

The early part of the year is always slow (Chinese new year etc.). But this year it was almost a total stop because the government needed to certify which vehicles and companies would get incentives since there had been some cheating and therefor the manufacturers waited until their models were cleared.

Expect a steep drop in January, but not that steep. 🙂

Exactly. China was, um, let’s say “slow” to put out the new approved for incentive list for 2017…so heading into January, nothing was approved.

Basically everyone buying stopped until the list was out, and the incentives were available again (everyone knew it was coming and would apply to all the major offerings).

Things started to get on track in mid-February, as China put out an interim list for the majors to attempt to more quickly correct the damage they had caused, but sales and full consumer confidence/understanding really didn’t get going again until mid-April….which torched that goal of 800k sales for 2017.

BAIC EC-Series (EC 180) with a range of 180 km and a very affordable price, romps home the title and what is impressive this time is the 8,000 + sales and its classified as a crossover in China. Perfecet vehicle for many families / business.