(Yicai Global) Feb. 16 -- January production and sales of new-energy vehicles (NEV) went into free-fall in China, but market players remain optimistic about the future of NEV manufacturing.
Statistics by market report publisher www.askci.com show a total of 6,889 new-energy vehicles produced in China in 2017, down 69 annual percentage points, with 5,682 sold for a 74 percent yearly drop, the officially-designated second-board reporter www.stcn.com stated Feb. 15.
Data from the China Passenger Car Association (CPCA) on new-energy passenger car production and sales in January show -- to the mortification of some NEV manufacturers, including major brands such as Geely and JAC -- that several of their models registered zero sales for the month.
However, many brokerages such as GF Securities and Ping An Securities remain bullish on NEV auto sales growth in 2017, blaming January's lackluster performance on the Chinese New Year holiday and pre-festival overstocking. Auto sales are expected to return to normal in February, with the competitiveness of domestic Chinese auto products expected to continue to improve.
Of note is that sales of hybrid cars rose 53 annual percentage points to 9,789 units in January, far outperforming electric passenger cars, per China Printed Circuit Association (CPCA) statistics. As an analyst observed, though hybrid vehicles are omitted from the Chinese government's NEV product directory, the hybrid car market has great potential as all major automakers have now entered the fray.