An employee works on an electronic vehicle at a factory in Zouping, East China’s Shandong Province. Photo: CFP
China led global new-energy vehicle (NEV) sales in the first five months of this year with a 47 percent market share, ahead of Europe and North America, a new analysis from the China Passenger Car Association (CPCA) showed on Sunday.
China was overtaken by Europe last year as the latter’s NEV industry boomed, surging to 44 percent of the total market and beating China’s 41 percent, according to the research by Cui Dongshu, secretary general of the CPCA, an industry body.
The proportion of China’s NEV sales out of global volume rose from 45 percent in 2016 to a peak of 54 percent in 2018.
But for the full year of 2021, China’s global share is estimated to remain above 45 percent, Cui told the Global Times on Sunday, noting that other countries and regions like Europe and North America are also pushing the sales of NEVs.
The estimate is based on the premise that China’s NEV sales could reach 2.4 million units this year, which the CPCA forecast earlier.
“The return to the near 50-percent level so far this year indicated a good restoration,” Cui said. The trend was mainly attributed to the availability of market-driven models in China, instead of the previous heavy reliance on government incentives, creating a basis for robust internal growth.
China’s NEV sales are expected to grow more than 40 percent each year in the next five years, Fu Bingfeng, executive vice chairman of the China Association of Automobile Manufacturers, said during at a conference held by the industry body in June.
In the segment of pure battery electric vehicles, China probably held a 57 percent global share so far this year, much higher than Europe’s 27 percent and North America’s 15 percent, according to Cui’s research.
US auto giant Tesla remained No.1 in terms of battery electric vehicle sales in the global market. Its proportion was estimated to stay at 24 percent this year.
“It’s really a win-win for the domestic NEV market and Tesla since the latter chose to build its Gigafactory in Shanghai to achieve mass production and large-volume exports,” Cui said.
Tesla sold 33,463 Chinese-made electric cars in May, including exports, an increase of 29 percent from April, according to CPCA data.
Chinese state-run automaker SAIC was second so far with 16 percent, thanks to the stellar performance of its Wuling Hongguang mini electric car.
Shenzhen-based BYD held 6 percent, behind German auto giant Volkswagen.