Pure EVs outsell hybrids in China

Chinese car buyers chose fully electric vehicles over hybrids by a margin of more than two to one in 2011.

 

According to the China Association of Automobile Manufacturers (CAAM), Chinese car buyers chose fully electric vehicles over hybrids by a margin of more than two to one in 2011. Meanwhile, a Deloitte study has found that younger consumers in the US prefer hybrid gasoline-electric vehicles (57 percent) over fully electric vehicles (2 percent). What gives? Are electrons naturally more attractive than hydrocarbon molecules to the Asian mind?  

Not likely. As we noted in a previous post, the Deloitte study made it pretty obvious that US consumers still aren’t clear about the differences among hybrids, plug-in hybrids and pure EVs. But in China’s command economy, there’s little need to educate buyers. The government generally decrees what companies will build, and consumers can buy what’s available or do without. And the Chinese government is pushing EVs in a big way. It has budgeted $1.5 billion a year for the next 10 years to support the EV and clean-fuel industries, and recently eliminated sales tax on EVs made in China.

As China Automotive Review reported recently, CAAM released statistics on January 12 showing that China’s automakers sold 8,159 “new energy vehicles” in 2011. Of these, 5,655 were EVs and 2,713 were hybrids. The figures include passenger vehicles (61 percent of the total), commercial vehicles (28 percent) and other types.