Ford took its first step into the Chinese EV market on October 18, 2021 with the first Mustang Mach-E rolling off of the assembly line. China is by far the largest electric vehicle market in the world, accruing somewhere around 44% of the EV consumer pie. With that demand comes a potentially lucrative market for the Blue Oval.
However, that also means anyone who can get into the EV games is going to try. According to China business database Qichacha, China has seen a surge of 81,000 new businesses relating to “new energy vehicles” in 2021 alone. About 80 companies in China have actually produced an electric vehicle product.
Good news is that Ford has innovation, experience, and money on its side.
Much like Tesla, Ford is betting that local production and a direct to consumer sales network will help them gain an edge on the competition. Ford is on track to inaugurate 25 stores in major metropolitan areas by year’s end and up to 100 within five years.
The order bank is now open for customers to order either the Mach-E RWD long-range, RWD Premium, RWD Standard range, or GT First Edition. Under China’s light-duty vehicle test cycle (CLTC) the long range Mach-E is rated for 619 kilometers, which is equivalent to 384 miles.
Ford is handing out major benefits for customers in China who sign the purchase contract before December 31st, 2021. These benefits include: vehicle and battery system warranty, roadside assistance, a new retail finance and replacement plan, and referral bonuses. Those who opt for the GT First Edition will also receive a nice gift. Hopefully in time for Christmas.
Time will tell how Ford does in the expanding and fragmented China EV market. On one hand, that’s a lot of companies to compete against. On the other hand, many of them are new, and it is quite difficult to start a car company from nothing. Hopefully the direct to consumer sales, incentives, and a quality product help jumpstart the company’s EV sales in a country that has several options.