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Range-extended vehicles decent alternatives to EVs | Updated: 2022-03-29 16:48
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Customers inspect a vehicle at a Li Auto dealership in Foshan, South China's Guangdong province. [Photo provided to China Daily]

Range-extended vehicles are currently reasonable choices considering the time purely electric vehicles need to get charged, said Li Auto founder Li Xiang.

Purely electric vehicles, like those by Tesla, account for the absolute majority of China's new energy vehicle market, while range-extended ones, which are not eligible for government subsidies, are not a very popular choice among carmakers.

As long as such vehicles have a longer electric range, they can meet daily use in cities and the drivers don't have to worry about their mileage on long-haul trips, said Li at the China EV 100 Forum on Sunday.

Li Auto is the first major startup to produce range-extended vehicles. Several other carmakers including Dongfeng's Voyah have followed suit over the past two years.

Li said owners of the Li One SUV are using the electric mode in 70 percent of their trips in metropolises including Beijing and Shanghai.

Li One, the company's only model, can run for 188 km on the electric mode. The carmaker delivered 8,414 Li Ones in February, up 265.8 percent year-on-year.

The electric range is enough for urban travel and for long haul trips the model can get filled at gasoline stations instead of waiting for hours to get charged, said Li.

"Compared with gasoline cars in the same segment, we are cutting carbon emissions by 65 percent," said Li.

Li said the carmaker will launch another SUV, whose electric range will reach over 200 km. He said it is technologically possible for such range-extended vehicles to cut carbon emissions by over 90 percent in the future.

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