How China will get 5 million electric cars on its roads by 2020

20 April 2012

BEIJING: The Chinese Government aims to put more than 5 million electric vehicles (EVs) on its roads by 2020, by offering subsidies and improving EV technology and charging infrastructure across the nation.

The bold targets were included in a statement issued after a China State Council executive meeting chaired by Premier Wen Jiabao this week.

The statement says China is aiming for the accumulative production and sales of 500,000 hybrid or electric cars by 2015, and more than 5 million by 2020. The measures are being adopted as part of China’s wider plans to develop the whole automobile industry by 2020.

The State Council also intends to lower the average fuel consumption of all passenger cars produced in 2025 to 6.9 liters per 100 kilometers, and 5 liters per 100 kilometers in 2020. 

The Government will meet its ambitious goals to upscale low carbon vehicles by:

  • boosting EV technology innovation
  • establishing a research and development system
  • increasing EV charging infrastructure
  • offering individual subsidies
  • developing pilot programs, which if successful can be scaled-up
  • recycling electric batteries.

The Government statement determined that the intended growth must build on current production capacity. It said: “[...] we must rely on existing industrial base, scientific planning and industrial layout to prevent the low level of blind investment and redundant construction.”

Changhua Wu, Greater China Director, The Climate Group says: ‘China’s ambition is to revolutionize its auto industry through substituting traditional internal combustion engines withEVs and cleaner technology. To achieve the set target, Chinese cities have to fundamentally transform their urban infrastructure and management system. 5 million cleaner vehicles on roads by 2020 will establish a solid foundation for such a transformation and much larger scale-up in the coming decades, when China will dramatically reduce its reliance on fossil fuels and increase its energy security.’

After selling 13.64 million vehicles in 2009, China overtook the US to become the world's largest auto market. China has since been edging to the forefront of alternative energy vehicle development thanks to increased Government support.

China’s biggest automakers are already building partnerships with EV technology innovators to compete for the lead position in China’s surging EV sector, and Chinese EV sales are now expected to top the US’s by 2020 according to a report by Boston Consulting Group Inc.

Read more about our EV program


Image © Jiri Rezac 2010

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