In 2019, luxury brands and mainstream foreign brands have begun to exert their efforts, and more pure electric new vehicles have entered the market. Chinese brands will face more severe competition in the future.
The competitive landscape of entry-level electric vehicles is further narrowed and refined. Mid-range offerings are growing, and competition with mid-range plug-in hybrid models is increasing. In the future, the budget range of new energy vehicle pre-order users will mainly focus on 100,000-300,000 yuan, and most of the cruising range expectations are 500km, and models below 300km will gradually be marginalized.
Under the dual influence of the changing pattern of the entire automobile industry and the decline of subsidies, new energy vehicles have undergone new changes after making great strides.
According to data released by the China Automobile Association, in October this year, sales of new energy vehicles fell for the fourth consecutive month, expanding to 45.6% year-on-year. From January to October this year, the cumulative sales of new energy vehicles only increased by 10% year-on-year. It is still unknown whether the annual sales can maintain positive growth.
In addition, the China Insurance Regulatory Commission recently released data on compulsory traffic insurance, showing that from January to October this year, the cumulative number of new energy passenger vehicles covered by insurance was 713,000, compared with the 947,000 sales of new energy vehicles previously announced by the China Automobile Association. 234,000 vehicles. Among them, the ownership of 371,000 new energy vehicles insured is “individual”, accounting for 52% of the total; the ownership of 135,000 insured vehicles is “unit”, accounting for 19%; another 207,000 are insured The ownership of the volume is “unknown”, accounting for 29%.
The rise of new energy vehicles has always been regarded as a “revolution” in the transition of automotive energy from traditional fuel to pure electric. Now there are changes, where will new energy vehicles develop in the future?
“Dangerous” in organic. Although the current development of new energy vehicles has undergone changes, it is the general trend that fuel vehicles will withdraw from the historical stage. At present, various countries have successively issued timetables for banning the sale of fuel vehicles. Norway and the Netherlands plan to stop selling fuel vehicles in 2025; Germany and India plan to stop sales in 2030; the UK and France are both in 2040; Austria, Denmark, Ireland, Japan, Portugal, South Korea, Spain, etc. are all electric The car has developed a development plan…
Now China is also about to join the ban on the sale of fuel vehicles. Although the United States has not made a clear statement of “thinking too much”, it is only a matter of time. From the perspective of dialectical materialism, the laws of the movement of things are spiral upward and wave-like advancement, and the turning point is exactly the negation of negation and the reversal point of spiral upward. The current changes faced by new energy vehicles may just mean new The inflection point is coming. Just as crises and opportunities coexist, inflection points and changes are not naturally mutually exclusive, either. From the current point of view, the development of new energy vehicles in China is facing three major directional changes, and there are also opportunities for development in these three major changes.
The medium- and long-term benefits of the subsidy retreat outweigh the disadvantages. The first is the decline of subsidies at the policy level. Under the background of energy constraints and environmental pollution, new energy vehicles have been favored by thousands since their inception.
Since 2009, various support policies have been introduced intensively. First, the state and local subsidies are “two-pronged”, and then some new energy vehicles are exempted from vehicle purchase tax to boost consumer confidence; at the supply level, there is a double-point system to encourage car companies. Upgrade. However, starting in June this year, the sharp decline in subsidies has poured cold water on the booming new energy market.
There are two major changes in the subsidy policy this year: one is to reduce direct subsidies, and the subsidy standard for pure electric passenger vehicles has dropped by at least 50% compared with 2018; the other is to increase the subsidy threshold.
The policy of “weaning” has caused many new energy vehicle companies to panic. For example, the subsidy for mid-to-high-end electric vehicles dropped by about RMB 50,000 on average compared to before the adjustment, while the profit of a mid-to-high-end new energy vehicle generally did not exceed RMB 10,000 before, which means that for every mid-to-high-end new energy vehicle sold, Car companies may lose about 40,000 yuan. However, not to mention that the state has already made it clear that the subsidies for new energy vehicles will be completely withdrawn after 2020. Even if the original large-scale subsidy model is continued, will it be possible to ensure that new energy vehicles will continue to make great progress? First, under the rich “welfare benefits”, many companies regard subsidies as the lifeblood of their survival, and even fraudulent subsidy incidents appear. More importantly, since the current new energy vehicle policy is essentially a “product subsidy”, in terms of resource allocation, enterprises are more inclined to produce and sell, resulting in insufficient research and development investment, but inhibiting technological innovation.
Especially at the critical moment when all countries are seizing the commanding heights of new energy vehicles, how can “flowers in the greenhouse” adapt to the strong winds and waves in the international market? In the final analysis, subsidies are just an “extraordinary means” to help the growth of new energy vehicles.
In the initial stage, given the inherent strategic mission of new energy vehicles, subsidies are necessary. However, with the maturity of technology and the continuous expansion of the market scope, only “weaning” can promote new energy vehicles from “policy market” to “market market”, forcing car companies to improve their technical level and market competitiveness. In terms of the industry environment, the advantages will outweigh the disadvantages.
Power Batteries: Lithium or Hydrogen? The second is the battle over the technical route of new energy vehicle batteries: Lithium or hydrogen? Since the beginning of the new energy vehicle, its mainstream power has been dominated by lithium batteries, but unexpectedly, the hydrogen fuel power battery, which has been unknown for a long time, has entered the market stage with a single-handedness.
This year’s “Government Work Report” has written hydrogen energy into a document for the first time, and stated that it will vigorously “promote the construction of charging, hydrogenation and other facilities”, which seems to indicate that hydrogen fuel cells will become the next outlet for the competition of new energy vehicles. Is the future of new energy vehicles lithium or hydrogen?
In terms of performance, lithium battery vehicles have been developed for many years and the technology is relatively mature, but lithium battery vehicles have been criticized for their low energy density, short battery life (100-300 kilometers), and slow charging (3-8 hours).
The shortness of lithium batteries is precisely the longness of hydrogen fuel cells: extremely high energy density, cruising range of more than 500 kilometers, and only 3-5 minutes for refueling. From the point of view of energy saving and environmental protection, waste lithium batteries contain a large number of chemical elements, and if they are not recycled properly, they will easily pollute the environment; while in the use of hydrogen fuel cells, “the only thing that is discharged into the environment is water”, and hydrogen has the highest content on earth. The elements are renewable and renewable, which makes fuel cell vehicles highly environmentally friendly.
From the perspective of technical cost, lithium battery charging is as convenient as home charging, and even the construction cost of Tesla super charging station is less than 2 million yuan. The catalyst of the hydrogen fuel cell is the most expensive scarce metal platinum, and because the hydrogen itself is flammable, coupled with the high-pressure liquid storage method, the hydrogen storage tanks and pipelines used in the hydrogen refueling station must be constructed with high-priced materials. Five or six times as much as a Tesla Supercharger. It can be seen that even though there are many advantages compared with lithium batteries, technical costs and other issues are still an important bottleneck hindering the development of hydrogen fuel cell vehicles.
Technological breakthroughs are by no means overnight. What’s more, if my country’s energy structure adjustment is to take effect quickly, it is also inseparable from the development of relatively mature lithium battery vehicles. Therefore, in the short and medium term, the development of lithium batteries and lithium battery vehicles is difficult to be replaced. However, problems in hydrogen production, energy storage, and scarce materials for hydrogen storage tanks have gradually broken through, and it will take at least 1-2 years for fuel cells to achieve large-scale commercial use. At that time, fuel cell vehicles may shine on the mainstream stage.
Compared with the extreme “you have no me”, the future is more likely to be a complementary situation where hydrogen fuel cells and lithium batteries complement each other. Lithium battery vehicles are more suitable for urban, short-distance, passenger cars and other fields, while hydrogen fuel cell vehicles are in It has great potential advantages in energy storage and long-distance transportation, and is more suitable for long-distance, large-scale, commercial vehicles and other fields.
5G drives new changes. The third is the true extent to which 5G promotes the development of new energy vehicles. Just as Apple “killed” Nokia by not relying on better call quality and longer standby time, but subverting the usage scenarios of traditional phones with new functions and demands, the same is true for new energy vehicles.
If it is simply longer than the cruising range and shorter than the charging speed, it is completely impossible for pure electric vehicles to surpass gasoline vehicles. Therefore, apart from the awareness of environmental protection, intelligence and automation are the sharp tools for new energy vehicles to convert use scenarios, broaden the use dimension, and subvert traditional fuel vehicles.
And 5G’s promotion of automobile intelligence may become the key to new energy vehicles catching up. On the consumer side, the application of 5G will help improve energy efficiency. The rapid expansion of the market has increased the demand for electric vehicle charging capacity, and 5G technology can better manage the demand side.
For example, with the ultra-high speed of 5G network and the connection capacity of the order of hundreds of billions, electric vehicle charging can be changed from traditional power consumption when the device is turned on to interactive power consumption with optional charging time, thereby maximizing energy consumption. Take advantage of efficiency and reduce costs (such as intelligent control to charge the car when the price of electricity is cheapest). On the production side, if the 5G future car is to achieve personalized customization for thousands of people, it will use the Internet of Things to connect all products, parts, manufacturing processes, etc., and it will be faster to achieve this. of only 5G.
It can connect the complex data of the automobile industry in real time without delay, and solve the problems of future manufacturing. More importantly, new energy vehicles have always carried the dream of “unmanned driving”, and 5G will give them wings. Driverless cars will generate 4000G of data every day, while 4G has a speed of about 12Mbps and a delay of 50ms. It is difficult to meet the needs of driverless connections and safe autonomous systems.
After the realization of 5G wireless network technology, its speed can reach 10Gbps and 1MS delay, which can significantly improve the level of reliable communication between cars and between cars and the surrounding environment, forming a great fusion of people, cars, roads, networks, devices and clouds , so that self-driving cars have the ability to deal with any emergency.
It can be said that 5G technology is a key enabler for the interconnection of driverless vehicles. The streets and vehicles of the entire city will be woven into a digital map, and the location of each vehicle is clearly visible.
For unmanned new energy vehicles to be fully commercialized, various supporting services need to be followed up simultaneously, as well as multiple challenges such as laws and regulations, ethics, etc., at least after 2025 or 2030. At that time, when the car changes from a four-wheeled mobile sofa to an “all-knowing and omnipotent” mobile super brain, the new energy vehicle may “turn over the clouds and rain” in the automotive arena with the sharp blade of 5G.
From this point of view, after the subsidy ebb, the new energy vehicles will be driven by the policy and will be driven by the market. The significance of developing new energy vehicles is more than that. As Jeremy Rifkin said in “The Third Industrial Revolution”, in human history, every time the energy conversion efficiency has been greatly improved, it has driven the production tools and transportation. Changes, coupled with changes in information and communication technology, often lead to a true industrial revolution. For example, it was the series of changes of “coal + steam engine + train + printing” that brought about the first industrial revolution. The subsequent series of changes of “oil and natural gas + internal combustion engine + automobile + telecommunication technology” brought about the second industrial revolution.
With the gradual adjustment of the new energy vehicle subsidy policy, the further upgrading of new energy vehicle products and the high-end technology will become a major trend, especially the industrialization of new power batteries, light weight, and promotion of intelligent network connection. Breakthroughs within.
Comprehensive upgrade of product performance
According to data from the China Association of Automobile Manufacturers, my country’s new energy vehicle industry has maintained rapid growth this year. From January to May, the production and sales of new energy vehicles reached 328,000 units, an increase of 122.9% and 141.6% respectively over the same period of the previous year. Among them, the production and sales of pure electric vehicles were 250,000 units, an increase of 105.1% and 124.7% respectively over the same period of the previous year.
Analysis of commentators in the electric vehicle industry focus: The substantial increase in sales is due to the continuous improvement of technology and product quality, which has increased consumers’ acceptance of new energy vehicles. It is reported that in recent years, without a significant increase in battery costs, the mileage of new energy vehicles has gradually increased from 120 kilometers at the earliest to 200 kilometers and then to 300 kilometers. The cruising range of some new energy vehicle products launched last year even The 400 km mark was broken.
In addition to the substantial increase in cruising range, with the continuous improvement of the market size, the level of charging piles and after-sales services is also constantly improving. In addition, the appearance of products is becoming more and more beautiful, and people are more and more interested in new energy vehicles. Approved.
Policy trends arouse market attention
So far, my country has introduced a number of strong support measures for the new energy vehicle industry. Driven by the continued exemption of purchase tax for new energy vehicles, the implementation of dual-point management, car lottery, and the policies of free parking and toll fees for new energy vehicles in some places, the development of the new energy industry has entered a fast lane. . It is understood that in order to promote the development of new energy vehicles, this year, the field of new energy vehicles may continue to introduce important policies in terms of infrastructure construction and model innovation, in order to reduce the cost of new energy vehicles and improve service quality, and further promote the development of new energy vehicles in the new situation. The expansion of new energy vehicles.
On the one hand, the policy is strongly promoted, and on the other hand, subsidies are gradually being adjusted. On June 12, the new subsidy policy for new energy vehicles was officially implemented. According to the plans previously announced by the Ministry of Finance and other four departments, the subsidies for pure electric vehicles with a range of 150-300 kilometers are reduced by about 20%-50%, and models with a range of less than 150 kilometers will no longer enjoy subsidies.
Electric vehicle industry focus commentators believe that the new subsidy policy may temporarily have a certain impact on the growth rate of new energy vehicle sales, but in general, it is conducive to the upgrading of new energy vehicle products and high-end technology, and promotes the benign development of China’s new energy vehicle industry. develop.
Future industrial development may present three major trends
It is generally seen in the industry that the development of my country’s new energy vehicle industry may present three major trends in the future.
1. Market competition intensifies
The mainstream new energy vehicle companies have accelerated the pace of new product launches. The electric vehicle industry focuses on the belief that the intensification of competition will promote the technology to become more mature, and the R&D cost will gradually decrease, allowing enterprises to focus on improving technology and reducing prices, so that China’s new energy vehicles will truly form a healthy growth.
2. Accelerated technological upgrading
There will be three major changes in the technology upgrade of new energy vehicles in the future. The first is that new power batteries will be industrialized by 2020. The second is lightweight. The industry will gradually form a vehicle lightweight technology platform based on aluminum alloys and composite materials to promote technology development capabilities and the formation of an industrial chain.Once again, intelligent networking, the industry gradually realizes driving
3. Independent brands will increase the intensity of international cooperation
Industry insiders said that with the deepening of the “Belt and Road” initiative and international capacity cooperation, the international development of China’s auto industry has also ushered in an opportunity. As an economic pillar industry of the national strategy, new energy vehicles should seize the favorable opportunity to strengthen international cooperation.
In short, the development path of new energy vehicles will definitely not be a trunk to the end. As we all know, the main sectors of the new energy vehicle industry chain are mainly vehicle manufacturing, battery systems and after-sales operation and maintenance.