Author Topic: China goes all out to be king of the electric car  (Read 1092 times)


  • Administrator
  • Boffin
  • *****
  • Posts: 12167
    • View Profile
    • The ADROTH Project
China goes all out to be king of the electric car
« on: October 20, 2017, 01:05:57 AM »
China goes all out to be king of the electric car
But will drivers embrace battery-powered vehicles before the lavish subsidies run out?

YU NAKAMURA, Nikkei staff writer, KAZUYUKI OKUDAIRA, Nikkei senior staff writer, and KEN MORIYASU, Nikkei Asian Review chief desk editor

GUANGZHOU/TOKYO -- After spending a dozen years working as a successful executive in the auto industry in China, Daniel Kirchert had something of a revelation. It was 2015, and the veteran of BMW and Nissan Motor was awed by a wave of change washing over his century-old industry.

"I had a strong feeling," he said. "The future is electric, the future is smart cars, the future is autonomous. And the traditional companies are not moving fast enough."

Before the year was over, he and a former colleague from BMW, Carsten Breitfeld, had decided to launch their own luxury electric car company. In just 22 months, they have raised $320 million, lured talented engineers from companies like Google and Tesla, and are preparing to show off their first prototype in January. And while their company, Byton, has offices in Munich and Silicon Valley, there was no question where their headquarters would be: China.

The decision was cemented after a meeting last year with Wu Zhenglong, who as Communist Party Secretary of Nanjing was promoting a fleet of electric buses and taxis in the ancient capital of east China's Jiangsu Province. "The supply chain was good, the logistics were good and we have very strong support from the local government."

< Edited >