China × Cleantech — April 2020

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Welcome to the next issue of China x Cleantech. For our full China × Cleantech history, stroll over to the “Future Trends” section of our website.

EV Sales

Tesla Model 3 Shines In Transition Month In China

On the 25th of April 2020, Jose Pontes reported on the sales numbers of the Chinese EV market for March 2020. The sales numbers are starting to recover from the first outbreak of COVID-19, but are still lower than in 2019. The March report shows that sales numbers dropped only 51%, to about 60,000 units.

Jose stated that while the numbers have been lower than last year’s, they are expected to start returning to positive growth by the end of the year.

He expounded on the top 5 best selling cars — the Tesla Model 3 with 11,280 registrations, the BYD Qin Pro EV with 5,271 registrations, the BAIC EU-Series with 4,450 registrations, the GAC Aion S with 2,957, and the SAIC MG eZS EV with 2,531 registrations.

The final two parts of the report covered the 2020 ranking and the new vehicles entering the market.

New Energy Vehicle News

Xpeng P7 Boasts Longest Range Of Any EV Sold In China

On the 28th of April 2020, Steve Hanley reported on the news that the Xpeng P7 sedan was rated at 706 km (438 miles) of range (NEDC) by the Chinese Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT). This surpassed the Tesla Model 3 Long Range, which has a rated range of 668 km (414 miles) on the NEDC rating system.

Xpeng P7 electric car
Image credit: Xpeng via YouTube

He then goes into details about the Xpeng P7, detailing its battery system, motors and prices converted to USD. He ends with the age-old discussion by discussing if the Xpeng P7 is a worthy competitor in the EV market against the gold standard of Tesla.

Renault Halts Gas & Diesel Car Sales In China, Will Focus On EVs

On the 14th of April 2020, Jo Borrás reported on the news that Renault will end the sale of petrol and diesel cars in China and will pivot to selling only fully electric vehicles (BEVs) in the future, using both its relationship with Nissan and existing Chinese partners.

Renault in China
Image courtesy of Renault

Byton M-Byte Production Begins In China, Keeps The 48″ Big Screen

On the 13th of April 2020, Jo Borrás reported on the news that the Byton factory in China was reopening and that the M-Byte crossover was restarting pre-production, signature 48″ dash infotainment screen and all.

Image courtesy of Byton

He then went into previous reports that CleanTechnica wrote about Byton building its own manufacturing facility in China and its focus on quality production.

Image courtesy of Byton

A Look At WM Motor, A Tesla-Inspired Chinese EV Startup

On the 8th of April, Jose Pontes discussed the changing EV startup landscape over the years since Tesla pioneered the EV startup trend. He then focused on the hot Chinese EV market and slid into a focus on WH Motors and an interview with Rupert Mitchell, Chief Strategy Officer of WM Motor. It’s an interesting read for those looking for insight into the Chinese EV startup world and this startup in particular.


China’s EV Incentive Changes For 2020–2023

On April 27th, Carolyn Fortuna reported on the news that China’s finance ministry announced changes to the country’s EV incentives. From the 23rd of April 2020, EV incentives decreased by 10%. Carolyn went into the impact this will have on the overall Chinese EV market, including the price limit for cars to get subsidies.


Tesla May Need To Adjust Prices To Qualify For New EV Incentives In China — To Where They Just Were

On the 26th of April, Steve Hanley discussed that Tesla needed to adjust the price of the Tesla Model 3 to remain within the price bracket of Chinese EV incentives. There had been a surprise extension of the length of incentives, a 10% reduction in the amount of subsidies, and a new requirement that cars have to cost below 300,000 RMB (42,376 USD) to qualify for incentives. Incidentally, this was above the cost of the lowest-priced Model 3 in China at the time (303,550 RMB) right after Tesla had raised the price on that model. Tesla did indeed drop the price again.

Tesla Model 3 price in China

Tesla Sets Up Shop On The Alibaba Online Marketplace

On the 19th of April, Johnna Crider reported on Tesla setting up a Tmall store, which is part of the Alibaba e-commerce ecosystem. The store offers parts, accessories, and even test drives. Tesla has been expanding and developing in China, and this is part of Tesla’s ongoing integration into the Chinese market ecosystem.

Tesla Shanghai Factory Tour Video Surfaces, Long Range Model 3 Ready For Sale In China

On the 9th of April, Steve Hanley shared a news roundup of 3 short stories: a video of a factory tour, strong Tesla Model 3 sales in China in March, and the arrival of the Chinese-made Tesla Model 3 Long Range.

Wicked Tesla China Video Explains Why Chinese Customers Love Tesla

On the 7th of April, Johnna Crider reported on the translation of a Tesla China video in which Tesla customers explained why they had chosen Tesla. This was interesting in the context to the expansive selection of New Energy Vehicles in the Chinese market.

Tesla China Surprises By Releasing 2 New Locally Made Model 3 Trims (Long Range & Performance)

On the 10th of April 2020, Paul Fosse reported on the news that two additional locally made Tesla Model 3 trims would be introduced, the long-range and performance versions of Tesla Model 3. The locally-made versions of the Tesla Model 3 are significantly cheaper than the previously imported versions and should galvanize Tesla market growth in China.

Renewable Energy

120 Megawatt Floating Solar Project Completed In China

Steve Hanley reported on the completion of the second phase of a floating solar array in Cixi, Zhejiang province, China. The project adds 120 megawatts of power capacity, adds up to 320 megawatts of total capacity installed for the project. The project is built on top of 2 reservoirs and should provide both power and water services by reducing evaporation. Read the article for more in-depth details.

floating solar in China
Image credit: KSTAR

See our previous China × Cleantech reports for more info from the red giant. Subscribe to the China X Cleantech newsletter to not miss a beat.


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Tim Dixon

When not researching the Chinese electric car market, I am teaching in China. My interest in sustainable development started in University and it led me to work with Tesla Europe in the Supercharger team. I'm interested in science fiction, D&D, and travel. You can follow me on Twitter @TimDixon3.

Tim Dixon has 62 posts and counting. See all posts by Tim Dixon