China has set an ambitious target of putting one million hybrid and electric vehicles onto its roads by the end of the decade.
Although the current level of hybrid and electric vehicles in the country stands at just 83,000, manufacturers and officials are confident of reaching the 2020 target – which then extends to three million EVs by 2025. Up to 10% of those vehicles will be earmarked for export.
Though ambitious, those targets have been scaled back from the original plan, which called for 500,000 new-energy vehicles (NEVs) in China by the end of this year, and five million by 2020.
Speaking at the Global Automotive Forum in China, industry analyst Ashvin Chotai said: “NEVs will reduce China’s dependence on fossil fuels, and developing its capability to produce NEVs will allow the Chinese manufacturers to leapfrog global brands.”
However, addressing the country’s so-far slow NEVs sales, Chotai said: “The key obstacles have been a high purchase price, a limited driving range and an inadequate infrastructure.”
Despite the slow uptake in the country, Honda’s head of electric development Yusuke Hasegawa said the technology will still be “very important” to China’s future. “At this moment, the infrastructure is not ready, and until it is ready we have to concentrate on hybrids and internal combustion engines,” he added.
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