China’s top automaker, BYD, has issued a patriotic rallying cry for the Chinese auto industry to unite and overcome global market challenges. Founder and chairman Wang Chuanfu emphasized the emotional significance for the Chinese people to witness a Chinese brand achieving global success. This call, which comes from Tesla’s main competitor in the global electric vehicle market, received widespread praise, highlighting the intense competition and overseas growth pursuit among China’s automakers.
At an event celebrating a significant production milestone, BYD released a video showcasing the evolution of the Chinese auto industry, from state-run automaker FAW Group to more recent players like Xpeng, Nio, and Li Auto. The video’s message emphasized unity among Chinese automakers to “demolish the old legends and achieve new world-class brands,” promoting the concept of “Chinese Autos.”
While this call resonated positively within the industry and on social media, some automakers raised concerns about potential regulatory risks for Chinese brands, especially in overseas markets like Europe, where Chinese EV exports may face anti-dumping scrutiny.
Great Wall Motor’s Chief Technology Officer, Wang Yuanli, responded to the unity message with a call to embrace the “reality of competition,” suggesting that addressing challenges head-on may be more productive than pursuing unity while harboring grievances. This reaction highlights the complex dynamics within the Chinese auto industry, where competition, regulatory concerns, and market growth aspirations intersect.
BYD’s dominance in China’s new-energy market, encompassing plug-in hybrids and EVs, has strengthened, with a 37% market share in the first seven months of the year, up from 29% the previous year. BYD’s success has even surpassed Volkswagen’s brand in total sales, underlining its prominence within the Chinese auto market.
The industry’s recent struggles, including a price war initiated by Tesla, and competition in global markets, make BYD’s call for unity and global success an important topic, sparking both support and concerns among China’s automakers. The industry’s ongoing challenges and ambitions will continue to shape the future of the Chinese auto market.