Ford unveils 1st gasoline-electric hybrid

Posted April 20, 2017

After the successful 2017 New York Auto Show, the world's carmakers continue to amplify their influence as they try to seize the lucrative Chinese market's attention at the nearing 2017 Shanghai Auto Show on the third week of the month where they will boost their brands of autos.

"It's hard for someone with an EV to come and take away market share from SUVs", stated Ben Cavender of China Market Research Group.

BorgWarner says it is showcasing an extensive product portfolio for combustion, hybrid and electric vehicles at the Shanghai Auto Show, but there is an emphasis on electrification tech.

China is the world's largest sales market for electrified cars and has ambitious targets to expand sales of fully electric and hybrid cars in order to address congestion and air quality issues in its cities.

Lex Kerssemakers, CEO of Volvo Car USA, said in March that he was pushing for its first electric car to fall in the $40,000 range.

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With China's fast-expanding middle class adopting modern, mobile lifestyles, passenger-car sales have almost quintupled over the past decade.

The decision to make its first electric auto in China also highlights the central role the country will play in Volvo's electrified future, Volvo said in the statement.

"There is a clear regulation by the Chinese the whole automotive industry is moving towards the petrol-electric vehicle".

On Tuesday, General Motors Co. said it will produce a gasoline-electric hybrid version of its Chevrolet Volt in China.

"All automakers in China are still trying to understand the implications of the more stringent fuel efficiency regulations and whether to increase production of qualifying NEVs or purchase NEV credits from other automakers, including their partners", said James Chao, Shanghai-based Asia-Pacific chief of consulting firm IHS Markit Automotive.

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Hence the proposal, released in September, calling for electric or gasoline-electric hybrids to make up 8 percent of every automaker's output next year.

That is why even as automakers fight electric vehicle mandates in the United States, they are scrambling to develop more plug-in electric hybrids and electric battery cars for China. News reports say regulators might have agreed to lower or delay them in an updated plan due out this year, but there has been no official confirmation.

SAIC, Geely and other rising Chinese automakers such a Great Wall 601633.SS and Chery Automobile Co Ltd [CHERY.UL] have a long way to go to achieve the sales levels of the U.S., European, Japanese and Korean brands in China.

BYD Auto says last year's sales rose 70 percent over 2015 to 100,183 vehicles.

Foreign brands take a different view of their quality image following a consumer rights show on China Central Television two years ago which accused one foreign manufacturer of selling vehicles with faulty gearboxes and accused others of carrying out unnecessary repairs and replacements.

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Lincoln, which delivered 11,731 vehicles in China in the first quarter as a growth of 114 percent year-on-year, expected the trend as "personal luxury" on innovation on smarting technology and hybrid energy. It is to be the first in a full range of pure-electric vehicles for China.