Speakers at the Global Automotive Forum revealed Chinese authorities have sent the word down to the country’s carmakers - and the orders are to ‘leapfrog’ the west with green and connected technologies.
China wants one million EVs on its roads by 2020; which might seem easy in a country with a population of 1.3 billion, but Autocar reports the country’s current EV and hybrid tally is a measly 83,000.
Following 2020, authorities want a further two million EVs to be built by 2025, with around 10 percent of those destined for export.
These targets are actually a backward step from China’s original plan, which called for five million EVs by 2020.
Much like the western markets that China is seeking to overtake, the hurdles for growing EV sales are seen as limited charging infrastructure, limited range from EV batteries and high purchase prices.
While stepping up EV development, Chinese carmakers have also been urged to develop ‘connected’ cars and autonomous technology.
A survey of young people presented at the Forum revealed 25 percent of respondents believed they could live without a car and without mobile connectivity, meaning 75 percent thought both were crucial.
With this in mind, Link Motion boss Pasi Nieminen urged carmakers at the Forum to “stop thinking about instrument clusters and ECUs - start thinking about computers”.
“Connectivity is the biggest revolution in the car industry since the combustion engine,” Nieminen said.
Android Auto, Apple CarPlay and Windows In The Car are finally making steps to offer better connectivity in cars, but it remains to be seen if Chinese carmakers choose to follow or do their own thing.
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