China’s electric-vehicle output up nearly 100% in H1 2018; battery-grade lithium prices dip

By Carrie Shi
Published: Thursday, 06 September 2018

Output of plug-in hybrid vehicles up 170% as China continues push for more electric vehicles.

A total of 413,000 new electric vehicle (NEV) units - including pure electric vehicles (PEVs) and plug-in hybrids - were produced in China in the first half of 2018, up by 94.9% from a year earlier.

And NEV sales rose to 412,000 units in January-June, up by 111.5% from the first half of 2017, according to data released by the China Association of Automobile Manufacturers (CAAM).

PEV output rose by 79% to 314,000 units while output of plug-in hybrids increased by 170.2% to 100,000 units in the first half of 2018. Over the same six months, PEV sales were up by 96% to 313,000 units and sales of plug-in hybrids increased by 181.6% to 99,000 units.

China is currently pushing for increased domestic use of NEVs, expecting increasing output and sales to support prices for lithium-ion battery materials.

As part of this effort, China launched a new subsidies policy for NEVs in early 2018 to encourage the production of high-performance batteries and NEVs with longer driving ranges, over those with a lower driving range and battery density.

China’s NEV output in June rose by 31.7% year-on-year to 86,000 units as a result of China’s continual promotion of NEV industry development. But month-on-month, output fell by 10.4% from 96,000 units in May because of producers slowing their production concurrent with the end of the transitional period for China’s 2018 NEV subsidies policy on June 12.

NEV sales reached 84,000 units in June, up by 42.9% from last year yet down by 17.6% from 102,000 units in May 2018.

PEV production hit 64,000 units in June, up by 18.6% on an annual basis, while the production of plug-in hybrids rose by 93.8% to 22,000 units from the same month in 2017.

PEV sales rose by 29.5% to 62,000 units, while sales of plug-in hybrids were up by 102% to 22,000 units from a year earlier.