Source: D K Grove Shutterstock
- Ford to launch its electric vehicle Mach-E in China.
- The company also plans to manufacture its prized Mustang cars locally.
- Ford China sold 602,627 vehicles last year in the Chinese market.
US automaker Ford Motors Corp plans to manufacture its iconic Mustang brand of cars in China, one of Asia’s biggest vehicle market where the global carmakers are competing for a share.
Besides these diesel guzzlers, Ford also has plans to introduce its latest electric vehicle Mach-E in the Chinese market, after launching the car domestically this year.
Ford is the latest entrant in a crowded Chinese EV market. Meanwhile, Ford has not revealed the price tag for Mustang in China, but it starts at USD 49,700 in the US.
Auto giants rush for a share in China EV market
The rising income of Chinese people, making owning a car affordable, and a government push for EVs, make China a lucrative market for the global auto giants. The Chinese government plans to increase the capacity of EV production to five million cars annually by 2025.
American electric car company and one of the world’s largest EV makers, Tesla Inc., has already begun rolling out its model 3 and model Y from its facilities in Shanghai. US automaker General Motors has recently announced it is upgrading its battery platforms for going full electric by 2035.
Besides, other Asian and European carmakers have expressed interest in the Chinese EV market. Volkswagen said its two newly built factories in China would soon start delivering electric vehicles.
China’s leading domestic EV makers, such as NIO, Li Auto Inc., and XPeng Inc. are also listed in the US. In the quarter ending December, they have together delivered some 45,000 vehicles in China.
NIO, which has recently unveiled a new electric sedan, is a major contender after witnessing record sales in 2020. It sold some 125,000 units despite lockdowns and pandemic-induced economic slump.
In 2020, the number of EVs globally rose to 7.2 million, and the figure is set to increase further. Last year, over one million EVs were sold in China, accounting for nearly six percent of car production in the country, according to the China Passenger Car Association.
Ford China Sales
The company hopes the launch of Mustang and Mach-E in China would rekindle interests among Chinese consumers for Ford cars after years of sluggish sales.
Ford supplied the Mustangs to wealthy Chinese consumers at a premium from the US. Its production in China would drastically cut costs.
In 2020, Ford China sold 602,627 vehicles, up by 6.1% year-over-year, but lower than the 1.27 million sales it recorded in the Chinese market in 2016.
In the inaugural edition of made-in-China Lincoln vehicles in March last year, the company had sold a total of 61,700 units despite the brand’s limited visibility in the Chinese market. However, rival brands such as Cadillac, Audi, and Mercedes-Benz continue to receive better traction.