China is mulling requiring that 60% of auto sales be electric cars by 2035, a big increase even after just slashing EV subsidies.
That didn't have a big impact on electric vehicle and other automakers. Tesla (TSLA) fell modestly. But Chinese electric vehicle makers Nio (NIO) and Kandi Technologies (KNDI) were little changed, along with General Motors (GM), Ford Motor (F) and Fiat Chrysler (FCAU).
Roughly 5% of China auto sales are electric vehicles (EVs) now, including fully electric cars and plug-in hybrids. Sources told Bloomberg Chinese regulators are still discussing the proposals, which are subject to change.
China's last roadmap, in 2017, targeted "new energy vehicles" at more than 20% of total auto sales by 2025. The latest proposal puts the target for 2030 at 40%, as China looks to dominate the global EV market.
Global carmakers are already making a pivot to electric cars, with regulatory mandates a major factor. The latest Chinese proposal could add pressure to electrify, since the country is both the world's largest auto market and its biggest EV market.
China's electric vehicle sales fell modestly in July following a long run, as overall auto sales decline. But lower government subsidies for electric cars also is a factor. Dozens of Chinese companies are selling electric vehicles or have plans to do so. Tesla is building a plant in Shanghai to avoid China tariffs on U.S.-made vehicles.
Tesla Stock Trails
In the stock market today, Tesla stock fell 0.9%, still below its 50-day line. Nio stock rose 1% and Kandi stock 2.3% lower. Fiat Chrysler stock, GM stock and Ford stock were little changed.
Electric Car Sales Rise In U.S.
Electric cars are typically significantly costlier for consumers than comparable gas-powered vehicles and unprofitable for automakers. Yet Americans are growing more interested in electric vehicles, and sales of EV cars rose 51% in the first half of 2019 in an overall slowing U.S. auto market. Excluding the Tesla Model, electric vehicle sales rose 8%.
On Thursday, GM CEO Mary Barra and President Trump me to discuss his plan to rewrite fuel economy standards through 2026, as well as ongoing labor talks and trade issues. Barra later called her meeting with President Trump "productive and valuable," but offered no details. The White House declined to comment on the talks.
But the Justice Department is beginning an antitrust probe into Ford, Volkswagen (VWAGY), Honda Motor (HMC) and BMW for agreeing to tougher emission standards with California than the Trump administration had approved, the Wall Street Journal reported Friday. Those tougher emissions standards would encourage automakers to produce more electric vehicles.
Trump in August hit out at Ford for opposing his plan to freeze emissions standards.
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