EV registrations in China nearly double from 2023

26 March 2024


China’s electric vehicle (EV) market began 2024 on a positive note. However, the initial figures do not tell the full story. José Pontes, data director at EV-volumes.com, runs through the results with Tom Hooker, Autovista24 journalist.

China saw 668,000 EVs take to the road in January, almost double the market’s performance from 12 months ago. Battery-electric vehicle (BEV) deliveries rose by 55% year on year.

However, January 2023 saw various external factors impact the plug-in market in China, meaning this total is skewed. This included a surge in COVID-19 cases and the ending of EV subsidies at the start of last year.

EVs started the year strong with a 31.6% market share, including 17.8% for all-electric models alone. Although this was below last year’s overall result of a 37% share (25% for BEVs), plug-ins should reach this mark by the summer.

The technology is predicted to account for over 45% of all registrations by the end of the year. During the last quarter, EVs could take over half the new-car market in some months.

Meanwhile, all-electric models lost ground in the EV market, falling to a 56% share. This is eight percentage points lower than January 2023. Alongside side the plug-in market, overall new-car registrations in China also enjoyed a sizeable jump, up 44% year on year to over two million units.

Song secures first

The BYD Song dominated the Chinese EV market in January, achieving 52,219 deliveries to become the month’s most popular electric model. The mid-size crossover is a firm favourite for the best-selling EV title in its domestic region. Yet, it will face tough competition internally as well as from other brands.

The Aito M7 took second, with 29,997 registrations, its fourth record month in a row. Part of Seres Group and Huawei’s joint venture brand, the full-size SUV received a refresh and a lowered list price in the second half of 2023.

In third, the Tesla Model Y reached 29,912 deliveries, just 85 units behind the runner-up. This was weaker than the crossover's usual performance in China. However, the mid-size model is expected to see a registration peak in March, possibly reaching over 45,000 units.

BYD’s top-ten triumph

BYD once again had a string of models in the top 10, starting in fourth with the Qin Plus. The mid-size sedan recorded 29,244 registrations and is expected to quickly return to posting over 35,000 units a month. After recent price reductions, it could see volumes surge even higher in the future.

Behind was the BYD Seagull in fifth, with 28,050 deliveries. Some of the model’s production is now focused on export markets, yet it should continue to feature as part of BYD’s block in the top 10.

Outside the top five, the Changan Lumin featured in eighth with 16,041 registrations. Its city car category rival, the Wuling Mini EV, sat behind in ninth thanks to 15,520 deliveries.

Meanwhile, the full-sized Li Auto L7 ended the month in 10th, posting 13,343 registrations. It beat the Wuling Bingo in 11th with 11,746 deliveries. Geely placed two models in the table; the Panda Mini came 13th (11,092 units) and the Galaxy L7 took 16th (9,772 units).

Full-sized fight

Changan’s sub-brand Deepal placed its S7 in 18th (9,109 units), in what was an important month for the premium SUV. It was ahead of its segment rival, the Li Auto L8, which finished in 19th (9,061 units).

Both full-sized vehicles ended the month in front of the BYD Tang in 20th (8,892 units). The previous category leader narrowly made the top 20, only 72 units ahead of the Lynk & Co 08 in 21st.

Outside the top 20, the BYD Song L recorded 7,374 deliveries in its third month on the market. The model is expected to join the table soon as it ramps up production. It is likely to start cannibalising registrations of the BYD Song, as well as the Tesla Model Y.

Elsewhere, the Geely Galaxy L6 had a record month, reaching 6,389 deliveries. Its Geely Group sibling, the Zeekr 007, achieved 5,853 registrations in its first volume month.

BYD’s brilliant form

BYD began 2024 in the same form as last year, making up 28.5% of all EV deliveries in January. This was a sizeable distance ahead of all other brands, including Geely in second with a 6.2% market share.

The Chinese carmaker was closely followed by Tesla in third with a 6% market share. The brand is expected to ramp-up volumes towards the end of the quarter as it aims to retain its second-place finish from 2023. However, competition with Geely awaits as registrations under its Galaxy sub-brand accelerate.

In fourth place was Wuling, with a 5.9% hold on the market. Li Auto rounded out the top five, accounting for 4.7% of EV deliveries. Aito was less than 1,000 units behind in sixth (4.6% share) while Changan was also nearby in seventh (4.5% share).

Geely grows momentum

With brands grouped together under their parent companies, BYD kept a comfortable lead in first, taking a 31% market share.

Geely-Volvo came second (9.6% share), as registrations increased for its Lynk & Co, Galaxy and Zeekr sub-brands. The OEM could end 2024 accounting for more than 10% of the market.

Changan came third (7.7% share) helped by the performance of its premium Deepal brand as well as Lumin.

Fourth place went to SAIC (6.2% share) mostly thanks to its Wuling marque, while Tesla ended January in fifth (6% share). Finally, GAC finished sixth (5.1% share), hindered by a poor start to the year from its all-electric Aion brand.

Give your sales team the edge

Discover more