Electric vehicle production in China will total more than 1 million cars next year, before rising to around 3 million a year by 2020, going by comments made recently by the chairman of the large auto manufacturer BAIC Group, Xu Heyi.
If true, that means that the auto industry in China will actually overachieve as regards the target set by the government there. The official goals in the country call for the production of 2 million electric vehicles (EVs) a year by 2020, and 7 million a year by 2025 — which would mean that by 2025 electric vehicles account for around a fifth of the total auto production of the country.
As it stands, there were around 424,000 “new energy vehicles” produced in China during the first 3 quarters of 2017 — which represents a roughly 40.2% year-on-year increase as compared to the first 3 quarters of 2016. That data comes from the China Association of Automobile Manufacturers. (“New energy vehicles” is a label which includes electric vehicles as well as conventional hybrids and fuel cell vehicles, not that many of those were sold.)
“The trend is definite,” noted Xu in an interview with reporters on the sidelines of this year’s Communist Party Congress. “Rather than the time when gasoline-fuelled cars are withdrawn, it is more important to consider the extent to which new energy vehicles are popularized, or their market share,” Xu continued.
Reuters provides a bit more context: “An industry ministry official said last month that China was already looking into setting a timetable to ban the production and sale of cars using traditional fuels. Wang Chuanfu, chairman of leading EV producer BYD, said in September that all of China’s vehicles could be ‘electrified’ by as early as 2030.” (For more on that, see: BYD Expects China To Shift 100% To Electrified Vehicles By 2030.)
It seems fairly likely that the official goals, which are expected to be exceeded, were intended by those who designed them to be overachieved. Not that that matters much, of course, as EV production is obviously growing at a very fast pace regardless.
Either way, the message seems clear from China — electric vehicles are the future, and even the near future.