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Sales of new energy vehicles nearly doubled in China last year

Sales of new energy vehicles nearly doubled in China last year

Sales of new energy vehicles (NEV) in 2022 in China rose 93% in 2022, to 6.8 million units, including passenger cars and commercial vehicles, according to the China Association of Automobile Manufacturers (CAAM).

In the passenger car segment, sales rose 94% year-on-year, to 6.5 million units, while in the commercial vehicles segment, sales rose 78.9% to 338,000 units.

However, as a percentage of total vehicle sales, NEV sales represented less than 1% of total vehicle sales of 26.8 million units in 2022.

In terms of vehicle production, China produced a total of 27.0 million units in 2022, up 3.4%, closely tracking Chinaโ€™s gross domestic product (GDP) growth of 3% last year, according to Chinaโ€™s National Bureau of Statistics.

According to World Bank data, last yearโ€™s GDP growth was the second lowest since 1990. When the global pandemic officially began in 2020, China registered GDP growth of 2.23%. However, Chinaโ€™s average annual GDP growth was in excess of 9%, peaking in 1992 and 2007 at more 

Among manufacturers, BYD led the pack, selling 1,863,494 NEVs in 2022, mostly passenger cars (1,857,379 units), posting more than 200% growth in sales. In terms of powertrains, sales of battery electric vehicles (BEVs) and plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs) were close. BYD sold 911,140 BEVs and 946,239 PHEVs.

U.S. automaker Tesla also saw sales improve by 67% last year, selling 710,865 BEVs, which were built in Shanghai, compared to 473,078 units in 2021. Tesla exported 271,095 units out of its total reported sales.

Chinese automaker GAC Aion, relatively less known in the West, was the third-largest electric vehicle manufacturer in 2022, with sales of 271,156 units, a 126% increase year-on-year. Germanyโ€™s Volkswagen Group came in fourth with 155,700 units, from only 70,625 units in 2021.