China Will Lead Electric Car Sales in Asia Pacific by 2015

Across the Asia Pacific region, various national-level initiatives and programs are underway to promote the awareness and adoption of electric vehicles (EVs), including the establishment of aggressive goals, subsidies for EV purchasers, research and development support, tax incentives, and public education programs. In certain markets, particularly Japan, these efforts have already borne fruit. Market players in Japan and Korea, however, are concerned about new challengers, mainly driven by competition in China. The Chinese EV market has critically important implications for global market participants. According to a recent report from Pike Research, China will be the leading market for EVs in Asia Pacific by 2015. The cleantech market intelligence firm believes that the Chinese market will represent almost half of the region’s total sales by 2015.

“China, where around 55 vendors are developing electrified vehicles or launching EV development programs, will likely create and lead an entirely new category around clean transportation,” says senior analyst Andy Bae. “The country will become one of the biggest consumer markets for EVs, and global industry players want to enter this market to tap the related opportunities.”

Driven by rising prices for imported oil and a determination to reduce emissions of greenhouse gases, China is making a major push to develop “new energy vehicles,” propelled by electricity, hydrogen, and clean diesel fuel. The country has one of the most extensive automobile industries in the world, with over 150 finished auto manufacturers. In contrast to Japan, where plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs) will continue to be the largest category of EVs, China’s central government has placed a strong emphasis on battery electric vehicles. Considering that the market for hybrid EVs is already led by Japanese manufacturers, China’s focus on “pure” EVs could help drive that segment of the overall market. There is plenty of room for growth: while Japan’s relatively mature EV market will grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of less than 10% between 2010 and 2015, the Chinese market will display a CAGR of more than 40% over that period.

Pike Research’s report, “Electric Vehicles in Asia Pacific”, provides a comprehensive examination of electric vehicles, charging equipment technologies, advanced battery research, government incentives and regulations, and key drivers of market growth in the Asia Pacific region. The study includes detailed analysis of new vehicle introductions, manufacturer strategies, and forecasts through 2015 for electrified vehicles, charging stations, and advanced vehicle batteries. An Executive Summary of the report is available for free download on the firm’s website.