Suggestions
    Go directly to
      Press Release
      January 21, 2021

      86 Percent of People in China Want an Electric Vehicle

      • Continental Mobility Study 2020 reveals growing demand for own cars in China
      • Use of cars has increased against the background of the coronavirus pandemic, as has the intention to purchase an own car
      • Rising demand coupled with an openness to electric vehicles could lend the technology a significant boost
      • High prices for e-cars are not an obstacle to purchase in China
      • However, respondents cite a lack of available charging stations as an inhibiting factor

      Hanover, January 21, 2021. In no other country has the importance of private transportation recently increased as significantly as in China. This is one of the key findings of the Continental Mobility Study 2020, in which representative groups of people in France, the USA, Japan, China and Germany were surveyed about their mobility habits in cooperation with renowned social research institute infas. Against the background of the coronavirus pandemic, 46 percent of respondents in China say that they use their cars more often than before. In Germany, this figure is half as high at 23 percent.

      For years, China has been a key automotive growth market for car manufacturers from all over the world. And the survey results of the Mobility Study 2020 show that the trend toward owning a car in China is likely to continue, with almost 60 percent of respondents saying they have already bought a car or are considering doing so.

      This development could also lead to a boost for electric mobility given the population’s openness to electric vehicles, which is greater than in any other country in the Mobility Study: 86 percent of respondents in China say they could imagine buying an electric car. By comparison, only 35 and 28 percent of people in Germany and France say the same. This wide disparity between the countries is also influenced by the fact that in China, more people in urban areas complete the survey as opposed to those in rural regions.

      Continental has long recognized the growth potential in the area of e-mobility in China. “The Chinese market remains essential for the further development of e-mobility – and thus also for us,” says Andreas Wolf, CEO of Vitesco Technologies and Continental Executive Board member, adding: “We are shaping electrification at all levels and across all vehicle segments in order to reduce emissions, especially in cities, while at the same time designing environmentally friendly mobility for everyone and creating modern as well as sustainable mobility solutions.”

      With the Carbon Neutral for Emission-free Vehicles program announced at the beginning of December 2020, Continental is the world’s first automotive supplier to combine the two topics of emission-free mobility and carbon neutrality – and thus set a new, ambitious industry benchmark. As part of Carbon Neutral for Emission-free Vehicles, all of Continental’s business generated with products for emission-free cars, buses and trams – in other words, zero-tailpipe-emission vehicles (ZTEVs) – will be produced on a carbon-neutral basis from the beginning of 2022.

      As in the other countries surveyed, the biggest obstacles to the purchase of a purely electric car cited by respondents in China are the low availability of charging stations (63 percent) and the short range that can be covered with one battery charge (59 percent). Forced charging breaks during longer journeys are an additional deterrent (44 percent). High prices, meanwhile, are deemed a determining factor by just one fifth of Chinese respondents, which is the lowest number by international comparison and stands in stark contrast to France (55 percent) and Germany (46 percent). For most people in China, cars are part of day-to-day mobility. 41 percent of Chinese people use their car at least once a week, and 43 percent say they use their car daily or almost daily.

      Around 60 percent of Chinese people surveyed have been avoiding public transportation since the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic – the highest figure by international comparison. Carpools are also being used less since the pandemic began. Instead, more than half of respondents are thinking about buying their own car – or have already done so. At 58 percent, this figure clearly exceeds those for Germany (6 percent), France (11 percent), Japan (6 percent) and the USA (15 percent).

      Conclusion

      China can lend electric mobility a significant boost. According to the results of the Continental Mobility Study 2020, respondents cite a preference for traveling by car, the desire to purchase their own vehicle against the background of the coronavirus pandemic, and a predominantly positive and open-minded view of electric cars and new technologies as the main reasons for this.

      The topic of electric vehicles has reached mainstream society

      Electric mobility was already a key focus of the Continental Mobility Study in 2011; in 2013, the study also covered attitudes toward this topic. Almost a decade on, the time has come for another survey on the subject. What do people in leading industrialized nations on three continents think about electric mobility today? Shedding light on the topic of alternative drive systems, particularly battery-powered vehicles, is a worthwhile undertaking. There are various reasons for this: on the one hand, the spread of electrically powered vehicles lags significantly behind the expectations expressed in recent years. On the other, the topic of ecological sustainability has definitively found acceptance in the social and political mainstream. For many companies, it has gone from being an optional luxury to a central pillar of their business model.

      The Continental Mobility Study

      Since 2011, the technology company Continental has carried out the Continental Mobility Study on various key topics at regular intervals. The Continental Mobility Study 2020 is the sixth edition of the study, which asks people in Germany, France, the USA, China and Japan about various aspects of mobility. In the first stage in September 2020, a representative sample of the population was surveyed in five countries on three continents.

      In addition to the expectations and attitudes regarding electric vehicles, the survey also dealt with changes in mobility against the backdrop of the global COVID-19 pandemic. Measures to stop the spread of the virus temporarily reduced mobility to a great extent in all of the surveyed countries as part of strict lockdowns imposed on their populations. At the same time, the behavior of many people changed, even after the measures were relaxed and mobility could largely return to normal. The findings of the survey reveal specific changes in behavior, attitudes and expectations. The Mobility Study 2020 is a joint effort between Continental and the market and social research institute infas, which has been supporting the Mobility Study since 2011.

      Available documents

      Cookie Policy

      We use cookies to provide you with the best experience on our website. Click on "Accept all" to allow all cookies or "Change cookie settings" to decide individually.

      Note: If you consent to the use of performance cookies, you also consent to the transfer of your personal data to insecure third countries (e.g. to the USA). These insecure third countries do not provide a level of data protection comparable to EU standards. In the case of certain third party providers, such as Google and Mouseflow, no other guarantees are offered to compensate for this deficit. There is therefore a risk that the transmission of your personal data may result in state authorities accessing your personal data without you having effective legal protection options.

      For more information on performance technologies and the transfer of data to third countries, please refer to the privacy policy.

      By clicking the "Accept all" button, you explicitly consent to this. Consent can be revoked at any time by changing the cookie settings. The further processing of data already collected before revocation by the third-party provider cannot be excluded.

      A cookie is a small data file that is stored on your device. We use cookies to provide basic and convenience functionalities, measure website performance and analyze user behavior on the website. 

      Required cookies are always activated because they are indispensable for the operation of the website and to store your cookie consent. Functional and performance cookies are optional. All optional cookies are deactivated by default.

      You can change your cookie settings at any time by visiting our Cookie Policy or by clearing the cache in your browser. 

      Show more Show less
      Back
      Required cookies Required

      These cookies are required to provide you with key functions.

      Functional cookies

      These cookies are used to provide certain functionalities to you.

      Performance cookies

      These cookies are used to measure website performance and user behavior. All collected data are analyzed anonymously.