China’s electric vehicle industry has experienced a strong recovery in June, recording over 140% growth in passenger EV sales amid the ongoing impact of the Covid-19 pandemic and supply chain challenges, data from the China Passenger Car Association (CPCA) showed on Friday.

Why it matters: The growth was driven mainly by a strong comeback from BYD, Tesla, and other Chinese auto brands like Nio and Li Auto, after Shanghai and other cities lifted pandemic-related lockdowns, showing the impressive resilience of the Chinese EV space.

Details: The CPCA said on Friday that the wholesale volume of passenger EVs in China hit a record monthly high in June with a total sales of 571,000 vehicles, a whopping yearly 141.4% increase. In June, passenger car sales, including combustion engine cars and EVs, increased by 22.6% from last year to 1.94 million units.

  • The boost in sales comes as China rolls out hefty stimulus measures, which include additional subsidies and tax cuts, Cui Dongshu, CPCA secretary-general, told reporters during an online conference on Friday. 
  • Tesla’s Shanghai Gigafactory came back “with a vengeance” after a 22-day stoppage in April due to Shanghai’s lockdown, chief executive Elon Musk previously told investors, with shipments surging 145% month-on-month and 135% from a year ago to 78,906 vehicles.
  • BYD has maintained its top place with almost 25% of the market share, with sales in June hitting 134,036 units, tripling 2021 levels. Meanwhile, EV sales from domestic auto majors Geely and GAC’s EV unit Aion rose by 393% and 182% to 29,671 and 24,109 units, respectively.
  • Young EV makers Nio, Xpeng Motors, and Li Auto are also getting back to previous levels by ramping up production and working closely with suppliers, while Sokon, a manufacturing partner of Chinese tech giant Huawei, delivered 7,658 Seres-branded EVs last month, a 41% monthly growth.

Context: Forecasts for the Chinese EV market have remained bullish. Morgan Stanley raised its outlook for this year’s EV sales by 24% to 5.7 million vehicles in a research note on Li Auto on Friday, Chinese media outlet Sina Finance reported.

  • CPCA expects China’s EV sales to edge up 84% to 5.5 million units this year, while consulting firm AlixPartners forecasts that number to be 5.1 million, with Chinese-brand vehicles retaining an enormous share of the market.

Jill Shen

Jill Shen is Shanghai-based technology reporter. She covers Chinese mobility, autonomous vehicles, and electric cars. Connect with her via e-mail: jill.shen@technode.com or Twitter: @yushan_shen