The unbridled development of the Chinese groups within the electric car sector is a long-announced tsunami that the large groups have underestimated despite clear warnings. Now the president of one of the largest and most experienced brands admits that Western groups are not competitive and that we have to prepare for the onslaught of the Chinese.
This has been indicated by the president of Ford, Bill Ford, who in an interview with CNN has admitted that US manufacturers are not ready to compete against China. According to the North American executive, « They are developing very quickly and developing cars on a large scale. And now they are exporting them. They are not here, but they will come. We believe that, at some point, we have to prepare, and we are doing that .”
It is not the first time that Mr. Farley warns of what is to come, and last May he indicated in an interview that the Chinese manufacturers are his main competitors in the electric car sector, neither General Motors nor Toyota and that Ford would need a single brand or lower cost to hold out.
Ford has seen how China has developed a powerful electric car production industry in a few years, from which they are trying to take advantage and learn to boost their production chain.
In February, Ford announced a $3.5 billion investment to build a lithium iron phosphate (LFP) battery plant in Marshall, Michigan.
A plant that is a graphic example of the strategy of taking advantage of the knowledge of Chinese to shape its program, and in this way, the plant will be 100% owned by Ford, but it will use the technology of the Chinese CATL to shape its batteries.
A movement that comes after Ford itself has given up, or at least lifted the gas pedal, in the Chinese market. Something caused by the bad sales figures for electric cars in a market taken by force by its local brands and by Tesla.
The main problem is that now China has set out to conquer the international market as well. The data is very clear, and according to the latest government figures, in the first quarter of this year, China surpassed Japan as the world’s leading exporter of cars.
Some exports between January and April reached 1.49 million units, with a year-on-year increase of 71%, of which 30% correspond to electric cars and plug-in hybrids.
An unstoppable dynamic that according to estimates will mean that total car exports from China will reach 4.4 million units in all of 2023, of which 1.3 million will be electric cars.