Yanis Darras 10:00 am, April 23, 2023

Long prevented from entering the market, Chinese car manufacturers are landing in Europe. Armed with their electric vehicles, they intend to grab market share, and become key players in the battery car. But what are their productions worth?

Motor shows are no longer popular in the West... but not in China. After a three-year absence, the Shanghai Motor Show opened this week. An important event for European manufacturers, who still covet with as much appetite the market of the Middle Kingdom, the world's largest car market, with nearly 20 million units sold last year.

But they have to face the exponential growth of Chinese brands, determined to dominate Western brands at home thanks to electric vehicles and why not, in the long term, on their land. Because the transition from the combustion engine to the electric motor gives a boost to Chinese manufacturers to turn the situation around. This is evidenced by the hundreds of start-ups that have been born in the communist country in recent years and want to make a place for themselves in the sun.

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Start-ups determined to win

Among them: Nio. This start-up created nine years ago wants to be the Chinese Tesla. With its high-end electric sedans and SUVs, the Shanghai-based manufacturer wants to stand out from the competition by offering a unique solution on the market: "Battery swap". The manufacturer promises a recharge in just five minutes, by simply changing the battery of its vehicle in a dedicated station.

The start-up has already set foot on our continent, in Norway, and will start marketing its models in the European Union, including Germany, this year. A network of stations for changing batteries will also be developed on the continent.

Nio will have to face one of its big competitors: Xpeng. This brand born in 2014, also wants to impose itself in Europe, especially thanks to the P7 sedan which promises more than 500 kilometers of autonomy, and its large SUV, the G9. Vehicles already available in Northern Europe (Norway, Denmark, Sweden and the Netherlands), where motorists are already fond of electric vehicles.

The little Thumb of the Chinese automobile is counting on the European continent to boost its sales, while the brand is struggling to impose itself on its domestic market as the competition is fierce.

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Chinese giants also want their share

But in addition to facing brands already fallen into the hands of the Chinese, such as Volvo or MG, respectively owned by Geely and SAIC (two automotive giants in China), they will face on their way, the leader of the Chinese electric car: BYD.

The brand that dominates the battery vehicle market in China (one in three electrified cars sold in March on the Chinese market was a BYD), wants to extend its dominance in Europe. To achieve this, the giant offers a complete range, with two SUVs and a sedan. If the prices of these first vehicles are in the average of their segments, BYD will try to make a place for itself on the Old Continent with its compact sedan Dolphin, competitor of the Volkswagen ID.3 and Renault Megane E-tech. It should be sold around 30,000 euros, a price 10,000 euros lower than its main competitors, which should seduce consumers.