We’ve been seeing a massive gap in the affordable-EV market, where China and it’s manufacturing companies have been eager to sneak in and fill that void. Whether it’s blatant ripoffs of Tesla vehicles, more original creations, or Chinese investments in European production, the country has been bending over backwards to make sure it’s on the ground floor of this burgeoning industry.
This week, Renault Group chairman Jean-Dominique Senard, gave a stark warning to the French Parliament. He cited the growing presence of Chinese EVs in Norway, a particularly large European market, as a great threat to EU automakers.
MG, the formerly British brand, now owned by the Chinese, has sold hundreds of their new EV in Norway so far. As companies like Xpeng and NIO also start to send cars to Norway, Senad worries that the French company will have a hard time catching up.
We are going to face ferocious competition from within and outside Europe. We have to turn around quickly to be able to counter these new entrants.
Where a lot of EV enthusiasts probably saw this coming from a long ways off, the epiphany coming to a European carmaker comes with a slight sigh of relief. If a company wants to survive the onslaught of Chinese electric vehicles, they had better get started a couple of years ago.
Few want to live in a future with less diversity in car options, with no options for vehicles made domestically. Affordable brands like Renault are the ones most at risk.
There are a lot of Chinese startups making electric vehicles, including one testing SUVs in Corsica to see if they are adapted to the European market, and then sell them all over Europe.
Competition can be great if companies do their best to stay relevant and adapt. With the advancements coming out of Chinese firms, specifically CATL and Tesla’s partnership, some of the leading companies in the electric revolution will decide to join with the Chinese instead of fight them.