“Once you start to believe in the science of global warming and look at the regulatory environment around the world, it becomes pretty clear that to win the future, you’ve got to win [electric and driverless personal transportation],” Mary Barra, the CEO of GM, told Bloomberg Businessweek in September. By those standards, China appears to be on the path to win the future. In 2018, the global stock of electric vehicles grew to 5 million — and 45% of the world’s electric vehicles on the road are in China. The U.S. and Europe sold 361,000 and 385,000 electric cars in 2018, respectively. China sold more than 1 million.
Still, there are signs of trouble looming on the horizon. Domestic manufacturers of electric vehicles in China have seen sales dropping on account of trade war troubles and the Chinese government cutting subsidies for electric vehicles earlier this year.