Without China’s Support, the Prediction of Selling 2 Million EVs Annually By 2020 Seems Beyond Reach


BYD e6 Sales Have Been Modest at best

BYD e6 Sales Have Been Modest at best

It’s been stated on several occasions now that by 2020, auto analysts expect 2 million or so electric vehicles to be sold annually.

Most EVs From China End Up in Fleets

Most EVs From China End Up in Fleets

Compared to the 110,000 or so sold in 2012, 2 million is a monumental leap, but we won’t get there by 2020 without China.

In 2012, it’s estimated that some 8,000 electric vehicles were sold in China.  That’s far below the previous predictions of 100,000-plus put out by analysts years ago.  2013 isn’t shaping up to be much better in terms of EV sales in China and 2014 will likely be a dud too.

Electric vehicles (not trikes or e-bikes) aren’t catching on in China, despite automakers there continually promising new models.  The problem seems to be with buyers who just aren’t buying EVs there.  This is likely due to high price tags, as compared to ICE.

China offers strong incentives to those who purchase EVs (~$9,000 per vehicle), but still buyers aren’t buying.  This non-buying puts a damper on future EV plans for automakers who see no reason to develop and build vehicles that buyers won’t buy.

The US is the #1 plug-in market.  Japan #2 and Europe #3.  Most analysts think China will eventually be #1 and that’s where the 2 million EVs sold annually by 2020 prediction comes in, but without China showing some love for plug-ins, 2 million just can’t be achieved by 2020.  Especially when those same analysts says that half of those 2 million sales will be in China.

China’s government is trying to boost sales, but buyers have to buy and aside from forcing them to do so, we’re unsure of what else can be done to get China on board the EV revolution.  Any ideas?

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22 Comments on "Without China’s Support, the Prediction of Selling 2 Million EVs Annually By 2020 Seems Beyond Reach"

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What about the KANDI model of rental electric cars? You rent from and drop off at terminals – much like renting bikes. The model calls for having tens of terminals per city, and rapid battery swaps instead of in-situ charging. A new battery is good for about 120 km, and the range is expected to improve in coming years. So the issue of charging stations is solved. The business is already up and running in Hangzhou, China, and is expected to start Shanghai trials in a year or two. Rents for 20 RMB (about US$3) per hour.

If the model works, Kandi will likely be in overseas markets before long.

Where can we read this company’s financials to see if it is viable?

Financials don’t look good per Q3 ER. Let’s see how Q4 is.

EV sales in China should pick up this year with the launch of the Tesla Model S and Leaf as the ‘Morning Wind’.

Followed by the Ford Focus Electric and plug-in Energi models based on an article from Automobile magazine from 2011-

Ford will pursue the production and sale of hybrid and electric cars in China, as the company builds more factories and expands its reach in the growing market. According to The Detroit News, Ford CEO Alan Mulally made the announcement during a television interview in China.

“As we move to more electrification, you’re going to see more hybrids, plug-in hybrids and all-electric [cars],” Mulally said.

What makes the Japanese market larger than the European market?

Japan started with massive EV production earlier, and Europe has had a deeper and longer recession. Eventually Europe can overtake Japan.

Well, the whole article talks about vehicles sold and markets. The european market is bigger than the japanese market. So it should be Europe 2 and Japan 3. And even if you would talk about cars produced then Japan is number 1 and US number 2.

Top 20 countries from 2011

1 China 14,485,326 24.0%
2 Japan 7,158,525 11.9%
3 Germany 5,871,918 9.7%
4 South Korea 4,221,617 7.0%
5 India 3,038,332 5.0%
6 U.S.A. 2,966,133 4.9%
7 Brazil 2,534,534 4.2%
8 France 1,931,030 3.2%
9 Spain 1,819,453 3.0%
10 Russia 1,738,163 2.9%
11 Mexico 1,657,080 2.8%
12 Iran 1,413,276 2.3%
13 U.K. 1,343,810 2.2%
14 Czech Republic 1,191,968 2.0%
15 Canada 990,483 1.6%
16 Poland 722,285 1.2%
17 Slovakia 639,763 1.1%
18 Turkey 639,734 1.1%
19 Argentina 577,233 1.0%
20 Indonesia 561,863 0.9%

First, the Chinese need to reduce their reliance on coal (70% of all energy use/65% of electricity generation). Air pollution is a serious concern, and UCS studies have repeatedly shown BEVs powered by coal-generated electricity pollute more than petroleum using hybrids.

Provide free power for the cars in China. Also allow them to be the only cars on road on heavy pollution days… sales will pick up in no time.

Adoption of EVs is not a mystery. It’s a simple function of the quality of the offerings. All you need for 2 million EVs globally is one of the stupid automakers for once make a half decent EV at a cost based price. Instead of the crap they have been offering us so far. Once the first decent EVs are available then it takes off. That’s just the way it is, that’s what we are waiting for and nothing else. Well, that and a minimum fast charge network but primarily the value proposition of the car. The Zoe would be acceptable if only the price was reasonable for instance. It’s not at all a well done EV but if it was priced fairly it would sell well enough. The potential is huge, the automakers are just idiots. For instance it’s quite trivial and nearly cost free to make an EV Ferrari quick. That would really sell some cars. But they are so used to giving you shit that they subconsciously sabotage that opportunity. Tesla is far more progressive in their thinking which is why the car has appeal but they fail in other areas. 2.1ton for instance. and the price… Read more »

It seems like it might be Volkswagen who will be that automaker who will be the real game changer. With the e-UP (electric), twin-UP (hybrid), e-Golf (electric) and twin-Golf (hybrid) all on their way and plans to get at least a hybrid of almost every model there will be a lot of cars sold.
It will also force other automakers to follow, especially the german ones.

They have stated a goal of over 20 electrified models by 2017, if I remember correctly. A VW CC BEV would be nice with DC fast charging.

The e-UP is a very small car with a very high price. About 2½ times as much as the combustion engine version. So no, that sure aint it.
VW is among the worst, most reluctant and retarded of the old garde.
Only eclipsed by the super morons like Hyundai 🙂

Dan, Why do you criticize Tesla’s 2100 kg weight but you fail to criticize comparable S550 Mercedes’ 2200 kg weight and BMW M5’s 2000 kg weight? If you have not driven big sedan, they tend to weight around 2000 kg. Tesla’s battery weights only 550 kg and this certainly is not too much for 85 kWh battery.

Tesla will sell probably one million electric cars in 2020.

The problem is not that there is not demand, but problem is that car companies do not push compelling enough electric cars into markets. But they push only short range subcompacts that are living only from government subsidies.

That will be a really big ramp-up even for Tesla. Getting to 500 000 cars from Tesla in 2020 would be extremely impressive.

Tesla’s official goal for 2019 is 700 000 cars. I rounded up it for 2020 sales.

When journalists write about EV in China they always forget that there was over 100.000 electric cars sold in Shandong province with a special permit by the provincial government in the year 2013. These car are real 4 wheels EV , their body are made by major automaker and assembly mostly in the same Shandong province with local made components. The car are low speed max 80 km/h and with limited range ( around 100 km for charge) but the number demonstrate that there is a market .
I think that this is a revolution for the EV which start ( at the contrary of Tesla) from the bottom of the market.
Inexpensive EV for every body even people with very limited budget, this is for me the future of the EV in China, and can be a very bright future

I disagree. Cheap and short range subcompacts are depended on government subsidies and this might dampen then cutting edge innovation. There is no point to innovate, because cheap EV markets are immediately gone when governments stops subsidizing.

Tesla on the other hand has shown, that Tesla could sell 20 000 cars even without subsidies, because the have shown that EVs are competitive on their own rights.

100,000 EVs in Shandong? We need proofs