Plugin vehicles are all the rage in China, having scored 325,000 registrations in October, up 113% year over year (YoY). That’s an especially impressive performance when we consider that the overall market was down 5%.
This pulls the year-to-date (YTD) tally to over to 2.3 million units, and with further record performances set to come in the last couple of months, we should have over 3 million registrations by the end of the year … almost three times as many as the 2020 result!
Share-wise, with October showing another great performance, plugin vehicles hit 16% market share last month (13% full electrics/BEVs). This pulled the 2021 share to 13.7% (11.1% BEV), and considering that the last quarter of the year is usually China’s strongest, we can now safely assume that the country’s plugin vehicle market share will end above the 15% mark this year.
Another measure of the importance of this market is the fact that China alone represented over half of global plugin registrations in October!
Looking at October’s best sellers, we have the usual Wuling Mini EV winner on top, followed by one Tesla and three BYDs.
Here’s more info and commentary on October’s top 5 best selling models:
#1 — Wuling HongGuang Mini EV
With 39,128 registrations last month, the tiny four-seater won another best seller title and added another runner-up spot in overall ranking. With the little Wuling set to resume its trail of records in November, a 400,000+ score by the end of the year is likely for the small EV. With this kind of scale, it is natural that the joint venture is turning a profit on its star EV (probably a small one, admittedly), which opens up the prospect of exporting the vehicle. It also opens up the prospect of further product development. An announced refresh (slightly longer wheelbase, 26 kWh battery, more powerful electric motor, updated features) is already coming our way in order to keep the model one step ahead of the competition. The Wuling EV has become a trendsetter and a disruptive force in urban mobility, with the added bonus that the people buying it (mostly females under 35 years old) are usually a hard-to-capture audience. This is a new chapter in EV mobility.
#2 — BYD Qin Plus PHEV (& #5 BYD Qin Plus EV)
The BYD Qin has been the bread and butter model for the Chinese automaker for a long time, and surfing the wave of the Han’s success, BYD went all in with its Qin Plus. With a 72 kWh battery in the EV version (and 18 kWh one in the PHEV version), for only 185,000 CNY ($28,300 USD) in the fully electric version, the midsize model is very competitive. Both versions once again hit records in October. The PHEV version reached 17,503 registrations, winning the silver medal in the October plugin ranking, while the BEV version had 8,405 registrations, allowing it to join the top 5 for the first time ever. If we add both versions together, we get 25,908 registrations, placing the Qin Plus in 8th in the overall market!