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China Is Now Driving the Global Electric Vehicle Transition

The market has leapt ahead of the US and Europe, thanks to competitive pricing in the mass market segment.

Snap Chart

China Is Now Driving the Global Electric Vehicle Transition

While consumer demand for electric vehicles (EVs) has softened in the US and Europe, China has established itself as the leading market for battery electric vehicles (BEVs). Its resulting scale advantage has the potential to shake up competitive dynamics and rewrite the future of global original equipment manufacturers (OEMs).

To keep pace and grow sales beyond the early adopters, global OEMs in the US and Europe must target mass market segments. The challenge is doing so profitably. China has overcome this hurdle, reaching mix parity across segments, but OEMs in the US and Europe still skew heavily toward premium segments.

Achieving price parity between mass market internal combustion engine vehicles and BEVs has enabled higher overall BEV penetration in China. Because of their lower cost structure, Chinese OEMs are pricing BEVs both competitively and profitably in the mass market. In addition, Chinese OEMs have invested in premium connectivity and infotainment features—an area that customers increasingly value—while focusing on cost efficiency elsewhere in manufacturing the vehicle.

After a phase of strong domestic growth, Chinese EV players are now targeting new markets such as Europe and Mexico, putting pressure on US and European OEMs at a time when the automotive industry is already facing disruption from the broader powertrain transition, higher consumer expectations, the ownership model revolution, and more.


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