General Motors Faces Similar Issues in China, U.S. With EVs

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【Summary】While China is dictating what automakers do in the future, automakers moving towards selling electrified vehicles in the country are facing similar issues elsewhere as in the United States.

Original Vineeth Joel Patel    Mar 06, 2018 9:00 AM PT
General Motors Faces Similar Issues in China, U.S. With EVs

China is the world's largest automotive market and is dictating how the industry as a whole is progressing. With the country's push to clean its air and move towards only allowing automakers to sell electrified vehicles in the country, every brand is pushing hybrid and electric cars. 

With the help of attractive subsidies, 2017 was a record year for EV sales in the country. But that doesn't mean automakers have an easy road ahead of them in the country. According to a report by Automotive News, General Motors expects to face similar hiccups in China when it comes to electric vehicles as it currently is in the U.S. 

Similar Problems Are Popping Up In China And The U.S.

GM China President Matt Tsien stated that the automaker would have to navigate federal incentives, a lack of infrastructure, as well as consumer understanding and acceptance of EVs. These are all things that automakers are facing in America, claims the outlet. 

"China, I think, is clearly still a work in progress," Tsien told reporters at GM's headquarters. "If you look at the journey, we're really just at the beginning of that journey from a Chinese perspective." 

While General Motors and other automakers aren't having an easy time in China, there are a few things that make the country a little more accepting to EVs. As Auto News claims, the Chinese government is fully supporting the move to electric vehicles. 

"The Chinese government is quite determined to have this electrification materialize," said Tsien. He also added that China feels like "it has just as much of an opportunity" to become a leader in the electrified segment as traditional brands. 

Some Aspects Of China Are Better 

Another aspect that's helping automakers push electrified vehicles and New Energy Vehicles (NEVs) in the country is the price of gas. Tsien claims that gasoline in China is roughly twice as much as it in the United States. The average gas price in the U.S. is currently sitting around $2.54. If gas prices were to double to more than $5.00 a gallon, I'm sure consumers would move towards purchasing more efficient vehicles. 

While these factors would be enough to push automotive brands to create more electrified vehicles, the Chinese government recently announced a credit-score program that will commence in 2019. Under the program, automakers must have a score that's comprised of approximately 10 percent NEVS. If these standards aren't meant, brands could faced fines. 

Auto News claims that GM, with the help of its local partners, sold more than 4 million cars in China last year. But that figure only includes 11,000 EVs. The automaker sold 3 million automobiles in the U.S., which includes 24,000 Chevrolet Bolts. 

GM, according to the report, sees China and the U.S. as two of its major hubs for the deployment of EVs and NEVs in the near future. While the automaker hasn't stated how many of its electrified cars China will receive, Tsien claims that it's "a substantial proportion." 

General Motors' electric-vehicle program for China is reportedly a "multibrand, multiregional solution," which will see Buick and Cadillac play major roles in the deployment of electric cars. 

via: Automotive News

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