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China: Green Car Promotions Begin To Pay Dividends in China

Despite lingering consumer doubts about the technology and practicality of electric vehicles, the Chinese government and automakers are pushing ahead with the development of green cars.

Buyers of hybrid cars, which run on a combination of batteries and conventional engines, are entitled to a direct central government subsidy of 5,000 yuan ($790) per vehicle, while a rebate of up to 60,000 yuan on the purchase price is offered to buyers of battery-driven cars.

Other than government incentives, auto manufacturers are luring buyers of their alternative cars with free maintenance and a range of personalized services.

Their combined effort to promote greener cars on Chinese roads is beginning to pay off. A survey by the China Association of Automobile Manufacturers showed that 8,159 hybrid and electric cars were sold nationwide in 2011. All together, there are more than 10,000 green cars on China’s roads.

The energy conversion rate of electric vehicles in general is 46 per cent higher than in internal combustion engine cars, and they have the potential to reduce carbon dioxide emissions by up to 68 per cent, said Raymond Tsang, partner at Bain and Company.
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