A few days ago, Zhu Huarong, chairman of Changan Automobile, said at the 2022 performance communication meeting that China's auto market is undergoing a reshuffle, with both opportunities and challenges. He points out that 75 car brands have been shut down and merged in the past three years, and 60 to 70 per cent of brands are conservatively expected to face closure and merger in the next two to three years. He believes that only the head enterprises with good products, strong technology, large scale and fast output can survive and develop in the fierce market competition.
In his view, this is mainly because the research and development capability of Chinese brands has improved, and the head enterprises basically have the ability to develop completely independently; the quality control level of Chinese brands has reached or even partially surpassed that of joint venture brands; and the sales of Chinese brand new energy vehicles are large. Last year, Chinese brands accounted for 80% of the market for new energy vehicles.
70% of Chinese fuel car brands are "shut down and merged"? This is not without reason. at present, the domestic new energy vehicle market is growing savagely and explosively. New energy vehicle companies dominated by BYD and Tesla are beginning to encroach on the traditional fuel vehicle market. Ulay, ideal, polar krypton and other high-end electric car brands have also begun to challenge traditional luxury brands, which to some extent have affected the market development of BMW, Mercedes-Benz and Audi, and these brands have also begun to speed up the transformation and layout of electric vehicles. Compete with Chinese electric car manufacturers. In addition, more and more technology companies, including Xiaomi, Foxconn and Sony, are building cars, adding some uncertainty to the competition in the Chinese auto market.
In April 2022, Acura announced that it would stop domestic production, and Guangzhou Auto Honda would no longer produce and sell existing products of the Guangzhou Automobile Acura brand; then, Guangzhou Auto Fick also announced the termination of domestic production and filed for bankruptcy under the authorization of shareholders, and its Jeep brand would focus on imports; as a member of the German car company, Beijing Baowo declared bankruptcy in November 2022. According to the Kia Automobile Annual report, Jiangsu Yueda Kia's debt ratio is 119.0%, obviously insolvent.
Entering 2023, more and more new power brands are in crisis. Due to the broken capital chain, Weima factory has long been shut down, terminal retail stores closed in a large area, most dealers choose to withdraw from the network. In addition to Weimar, Skyline has stopped production, and employees will pay living expenses in accordance with the minimum wage; Aichi has not been paid wages for two months in a row; Reading has filed for bankruptcy review.
Around 2017, new forces of car building have sprung up one after another. He Xiaopeng, chairman of Xiaopeng Automobile, has said that there were 300 new car manufacturers in China in 2017, but a few years later, new power car companies such as Baiteng and Rangers finally collapsed before mass production and became "PPT cars".
After 2020, despite the rapid growth of the new energy vehicle market, although some new forces have achieved mass production delivery, but with the capital market is not as expected, financing difficulties, and finally collapsed. Today, in the new power brand sales list, there are only ideal, Lulai, Xiaopeng, Zero run, Nezhu, but now the development of these enterprises is also beginning to appear pressure, especially Xiaopeng. Industry insiders generally believe that from 2023 as the starting point, China's auto market will usher in a new wave of elimination of car companies, and some of the current head car-making new power car companies may also be eliminated.
According to a set of data cited by Zhu Huarong, there are 148 brands in the Chinese automobile market, of which 114 are Chinese brands and 34 are foreign brands, while 20% of the head companies occupy more than 90% of the market share. the market competition pattern is changing from the original "six-point world" of Europe, America, Japan, Germany and South Korea to the top of Chinese brands.
Starting from 2023, traditional independent head car companies, including Geely, Changan and Great Wall, have accelerated their transformation to new energy vehicles by adjusting their organizational structure and planning new energy sequences. Traditional car companies such as BYD and SAIC GM have broken the past pricing system and realized the "same price for oil and electricity" to enhance the competitiveness of their products in the new energy vehicle market. Global auto giants such as Volkswagen and Toyota are also accelerating the promotion of electrification and launching new energy products that are more suitable for the Chinese market.
Zhu Huarong believes that in the long run, there are still "1-3" development opportunities in the automobile industry, of which "1" means that the overall market will continue to grow, and "3" means that there are three major development opportunities in the automobile industry: new energy, intelligence, and internationalization. China has become the largest producer and marketer of new energy and intelligent network cars, and the "Great Navigation era" of Chinese car companies has begun. It is estimated that by 2030, Chinese car companies are expected to have a global market share of more than 30%. In the next ten years, world-class Chinese brands will certainly emerge in the world.
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