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Consumers would shun EVs without incentives, survey says
Automotive News China | 2018/3/2

Sales of electric vehicles and plug-in hybrids have continued to surge in China. But most car shoppers would be reluctant to buy the vehicles without incentives, according to a survey by J.D. Power and Associates. 

Up to 29 percent of respondents said they probably wouldn¡¯t and 41 percent said they certainly wouldn¡¯t buy the vehicles without government subsidies or free license plates, according to the survey results released this week.

In Shanghai, China¡¯s biggest city, 55 percent of respondents would be reluctant to purchase or definitely would not buy EVs or plug-in hybrids, according to the survey.

Buyers of the vehicles in Shanghai are granted free license plates, which would otherwise cost more than 90,000 yuan ($14,220) each. In other Chinese cities buyers of the vehicles can obtain subsidies from the central and local governments. 

The survey also reveals that Chinese consumers have high hopes for EV driving ranges. Among the respondents, 77 percent hope EVs can drive for more than 200 kilometers (124 miles) on a full charge while 38 percent would like to buy EVs with ranges exceeding 300 km.

Most of the EVs available in China have ranges of less than 200 km. 

Sales of EVs and plug-in hybrids continue to advance this year. In January, combined sales of the vehicles totaled 38,470, more than four times the year-earlier tally. The number includes 26,753 EVs and 11,717 plug-in hybrids. 

The Chinese government wants to boost annual sales of EVs, plug-in hybrids and fuel cell vehicles to 7 million by 2025 from roughly 777,000 in 2017. 

To push automakers operating in China to ramp up green vehicle production, the government is due to enact a California-style car credit program in 2019. 

Meanwhile, the government also plans to phase out subsidies for EVs and plug-in hybrids by 2020 to ease fiscal burdens brought by the subsidies. 

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