Automotive Industry Annoyed China Gets to Decide What Engines It Offers
With the possible exception of the United States in the near future, emission regulations are getting harsher everywhere. Nowhere is that more true than China. Not only does Asia’s most populous country have some of the most stringent emission requirements for new cars, it also has theÂ strictest sales quotas for electrically powered vehicles on the planet. Too strict, according to some automakers.
A Chinese draft regulation issued last week stipulatesÂ automakers must sell enough electric or plug-in hybrid vehicles to comprise 8 percent of total volumeÂ by 2018, 10 percent by 2019, and 12 percent by 2020. This comes after talks between Chinese Premier Li Keqiang and German Chancellor Angela Merkel that hinted China might have mercy on Germany manufacturers.Â
While Volkswagen has pleaded for China to reconsider the timeline, it has specified that it would adhere to the 2018 standards if forced to do so. Meanwhile, BMW flat-out said it couldn’t.
“Just like all the others, we were below 6 percent last year, and I mean significantly below,” BMW China chief Olaf Kastner told Automotive News ChinaÂ in the country where the carmakerÂ has a joint venture with Brilliance China Automotive Holdings.
However, it’s not just German automakers that should be concerned. Most major manufacturers are trying to establish strong global sales while targeting China as a part of that endeavor. But the rules are different in China. Not only do companies have to get into bed with a Chinese firm just to do business inside the country, the stiff regulations are shaping the type of cars they can sell. The only way to stop this from influencing the sort of vehicles automakers sell worldwide is to have region-specific models, abandon the Chinese market, or play ball and offer more BEVs or plug-ins immediately.
According to Reuters, the most recent legislative draft by China’s Ministry of Industry and Information Technology is open for public comment until June 27. German Chancellor Angela Merkel announced at the start of the month that China had agreed to concessions on the timeline of quotas, but the most current draft does not reflect that.Â It’sÂ unchanged from one issued in September, with no alterations relating to the proposed Merkel rescheduling.
Dominik Declercq, China’s representative for the European Automobile Manufacturers Association, said the new draft indicated China definitely had not changed its mind on the issue.Â “That’s what it looks like: no compromise, no concession,” DeclercqÂ explained.
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June 20, 2017 at 04:07PM