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Wang Chuanfu, chairman and president of BYD Auto, proposed at the 2018 China EV100 Forum to increase promotion of plug-in hybrid cars to match BEV support.
Wang believes that PHEVs are the mainstream solution for private cars and thinks the government should exempt PHEVs from consumption tax, traffic control and purchasing restriction.
For BYD, the largest plug-in car manufacturer in China, it’s important as plug-in hybrids models accounts for most of company plug-in car sales.
Currently, all-electric vehicles hold some 80% share of the New Energy Vehicles market in China.
In other words, BYD is working to leverage its business. However, not everyone agrees. For example Yang Yusheng, a member of Chinese Academy of Engineering, said “PHEV is not a real kind of electric vehicle“.
“He also shared an anecdote at the forum. Certain PHEV buyers in Shanghai span off the vehicle’s battery for light weight and fuel efficiency. They used PHEVs as traditional fuel-fossil powered vehicles but with subsidies and free license plates.”
From the academician’s perspective, the right approach to cultivate NEV market is to develop safe and fuel-efficient electric vehicles with lower emissions, which should be yard stick for NEV. The focus of the industry should be put on battery electric subcompact vehicles and the range-extended battery electric mid-large vehicles, according to Yang.
It’s difficult to say whether the market will shift more towards PHEVs or not, especially in highly subsidized conditions.