Electric vehicles drive closer to reality
By Hao Zhou (
Updated: 2008-09-17 11:04

State Grid Corporation, China's largest electric power transmission and distribution firm, will accelerate the construction of charging stations for electric vehicles in Beijing, Shanghai and Tianjin municipalities, according to a report in China Business Journal yesterday.

"The first batch of pilot charging stations will not only serve trial electric buses, but also be available for electric cars that would make up a great part of the future electric vehicle market," said an insider from the marketing department of State Grid Corp. "However, the construction of a nationwide charging station network has to acquire the State authorities' approvals."

The construction cost of one charging station is estimated at between 250,000 yuan ($36,550) and 300,000 yuan ($43,860).

Meanwhile, the Ministry of Science and Technology is going to put 10,000 hybrid, electric, and fuel-cell vehicles, as well as energy supply infrastructures for each kind of vehicle, into an experimental operation in more than 10 qualified cities around the country by 2010, revealed Wan Gang, the Minister of Science and Technology.

The result will be the primary basis for government organs to work out polices for the development of new energy vehicles.

"If there are as many charging stations for electric vehicles as there are fuel stations owned by Petrol China and Sinopec all over the country, China will be the largest market of electric vehicles," the report quoted Wang Chuanfu, the president of BYD Auto, as saying.

BYD has poured more than 1 billion yuan in the research and development of electric cars since it entered the sedan market in 2003, and it plans to invest another 4 billion yuan to its new electric vehicle production base in Shenzhen.

Other than BYD Auto, many other Chinese domestic automakers and part manufacturers have invested heavily in the research and development of electric vehicles and parts, such as Dongfeng Motor, Chery Auto, Changan Auto, Wanxiang Group and Tianjin Qingyuan Electric Vehicle, in anticipation of a sound nationwide network of charging stations for electric vehicles.

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