China boosts electric cars
China has passed the United States as the biggest market for electric cars.
Sales of pure-electric and gasoline-electric hybrids soared 50 percent last year over 2015 to 336,000 units, or 40 percent of world demand. That was more than double the 159,620 sold in the U.S.
The ruling Communist Party wants to make China a leader in electrics. It sees them as a profitable industry and a way to clear smog-choked Chinese skies.
Quotas due to take effect next year will require electrics to make up at least 8 percent of every automaker’s output. Those that fall short will have to buy credits from competitors that have met their targets.
China’s stand-out EV success is BYD Auto, which exports electric taxis and buses to Europe and Latin America.
Volvo Cars plans to make electric cars in China for global sale starting in 2019. General Motors, Volkswagen AG, Nissan Motor and others have announced plans to make electric vehicles in China.