Give subsidies, compete for auto companies and grab resources: who can become the “capital of new energy vehicles”?


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By Zhou Xiongfei
Source: lianxianchuxing
Can you imagine that 90% of the people in a city with 4.4 million people live in the automobile industry?
This city is Detroit. Since the establishment of the first automobile factory in 1899, over a hundred years later, global famous automobile enterprises such as general motors, Ford and Chrysler have set up their headquarters in this city.
According to relevant data, around 1930, the automobile production of Detroit once accounted for 80% of the whole United States and 70% of the world. As a result, the city is known as “the city that puts wheels on the world’s cars”. Compared with this title, Detroit has another well-known name – the city of cars.
Detroit in 1930, tuyuan BBC News
Unexpectedly, more than 80 years later, after a man named Elon Musk came to China with more than a dozen Tesla Model s, a new energy vehicle manufacturing boom was set off in China, and new energy vehicle enterprises such as Ranger, Weilai, Xiaopeng, ideal and Weima appeared one after another.
At the same time, a battle for new energy vehicles in “China’s Detroit” has started among many cities in China.
As early as 2009, Wuhan took the lead in shouting the slogan of “new energy vehicle city”. Subsequently, many cities including Xi’an, Hefei and Chongqing also joined in the ranks. Not only through policies to promote the development of new energy vehicle industry, but also began to attract Weilai, Weima and other new energy vehicle enterprises to land in their respective cities.
With the development of new energy vehicle industry and the beginning of reshuffle, such competition is no longer limited to the field of new energy vehicle manufacturing.
In the past two years, Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou and Shenzhen took the lead in supporting the development of automatic driving from the aspect of license plate, followed by Changsha and Wuhan. Because of these policies, Baidu and Didi’s self driving taxis were officially launched in Changsha and Shanghai.
In addition, with the affirmation of the central exchange power station mode, it has also become another popular track. Since November last year, Chongqing, Wuhan, Baotou, Xuzhou and other cities have launched new energy vehicle power replacement operation demonstration projects.
The tuyere of new energy vehicles has not only become the growth “fertilizer” of domestic new energy vehicle enterprises such as Weilai, Xiaopeng and ideal, but also become an opportunity for many domestic cities to seize the highland of new energy and intelligent vehicle industry, gain the first opportunity in the tuyere, and further enhance the strength of the city.
Because of this, the battle between cities will not be less gunpowder than the competition between new energy vehicle enterprises.
Competing for “the capital of new energy vehicles”
Back 12 years ago, when only one out of 13 had a car. At that time, hundreds of new energy buses suddenly appeared in a city, which once became the news of high attention.
In January 2009, the launching ceremony of “1000 electric vehicles in ten cities” and 100 hybrid buses in Wuhan was officially held. In this regard, Wuhan has become the first batch of approved cities to promote the application of energy-saving and new energy vehicles in China.
It’s not without a reason to be chosen. Wuhan, as a traditional automobile industry town in China, has Dongfeng company and a large number of vehicle and parts enterprises, and has a complete layout in the whole automobile industry chain. Just one year later, new energy vehicles were identified as one of the seven strategic emerging industries by the State Council.
Wuhan’s ambition in the field of new energy vehicles has not stopped here.
According to an article published by Changjiang Daily at that time, Wuhan plans to reach 600000 new energy vehicle production capacity by 2020, so as to become a new energy vehicle center in Central China. In order to achieve this, attracting car companies to settle in Wuhan has become one of the main themes.
In February 2012, Shanghai General Motors announced that it will officially settle down in Jinkou new town, Jiangxia District, Wuhan city and establish a production base. The annual production capacity of the plant will reach 300000 passenger cars. Two years later, BYD announced that its Wuhan base will settle down in Huangpi Airport Industrial Park, Wuhan City and invest 3 billion yuan to build a new energy vehicle base.
Effect picture of BYD Wuhan new energy vehicle base
In the same year, with the entry of Tesla Model s into the domestic market and the establishment of new energy vehicle enterprises such as Weilai, Xiaopeng and ideal, the new energy vehicle track officially became a tuyere. In this regard, not only more car companies but also more cities are attracted to enter this track.
At that time, Jianghuai Automobile, located in Hefei, had begun to lay out the new energy vehicle market, and it also became one of the independent vehicle enterprises involved in the field of new energy vehicles earlier, and won a “ticket” for Hefei in the era of intelligent vehicles.
In 2015, Xiangyang, an industrial city in Hebei Province with Wuhan, also put forward the slogan of “China’s new energy vehicle city”. Coincidentally, after that, Shenzhen and Xi’an also announced their respective plans of “building a city of new energy vehicles”.
In addition to chanting slogans and making plans, the “snatching” of new energy vehicle enterprises has also become the main form of game between cities.
Take Weilai automobile as an example. As one of the pioneers of new energy vehicles in China, automobile enterprises have become the target of many cities since their establishment.
Weilai didn’t plan to set up its own factory at the beginning of car making. The Hefei government took the lead to reach a cooperation agreement between Weilai and JAC in April 2016. The two sides set up JAC Weilai manufacturing base to produce Weilai series models. At the end of the same year, the Yangtze River economic belt industry fund, Wuhan East Lake high tech Zone and Shanghai Weilai Automobile Co., Ltd. reached an agreement to build an intelligent new energy automobile industrial park in Wuhan Optical Valley.
Since 2015, in addition to Weilai, new energy vehicle enterprises such as Xiaopeng, ideal, Weima and byten have also reached cooperation agreements with some cities.

At the end of November 2016, Weima automobile’s new energy vehicle intelligent automobile industrial park was officially launched in oujiangkou industrial cluster, Wenzhou. At the foundation laying ceremony, Shen Hui, founder, chairman and CEO of Weima automobile, said that the first product of Weima automobile’s first vehicle platform will be offline in Wenzhou in 2018. According to relevant media reports, the relevant person in charge of Wenzhou City once described the introduction of Weima as “realizing Wenzhou’s 30-year automobile dream”.
Weima automobile Wenzhou Intelligent Automobile Industrial Park
A year later, Xiaopeng automobile was successfully introduced into Zhaoqing City, Guangdong Province.
In May 2017, Zhaoqing municipal government of Guangdong Province and Xiaopeng automobile jointly held the release ceremony of Xiaopeng intelligent new energy vehicle project, which was also the official landing of Xiaopeng automobile’s first self built factory. According to media reports at that time, the factory project also became the “No. 1 project” of Zhaoqing City.
The first and second production bases of ideal automobile also landed in Changzhou, Jiangsu Province in those two years. When asked that the two major production bases should choose Changzhou, Shen Yanan, co-founder and President of chehejia, told the media, “this is because of Changzhou’s superior investment and industrial environment. Just like this, chehejia decided to expand its investment scale in Changzhou.”
Similar to Weilai, Xiaopeng, ideal and Weima, the car companies such as Bojun, sailin and ranger that have fallen down last year are also the “Star car companies” that many cities scrambled for in recent years.
Since 2017, Bojun automobile and Baiteng automobile have successively built factories in Nanjing City, Jiangsu Province; Rugao City, which belongs to Jiangsu Province, has also joined hands with sailin automobile, Zhidou automobile, futuristic automobile and other automobile enterprises; Huzhou City, Zhejiang Province has successively extended olive branch to LETV automobile and ranger automobile projects.
For a time, all provinces and cities and new energy vehicle enterprises “team up” to build cars and drive into the fast lane, but with the emergence of the scandal of “policy fraud compensation” in the industry, the central government first stepped on the “brake”.
In January 2017, the national development and Reform Commission, the Ministry of industry and information technology, the Ministry of Finance and the Ministry of science and technology jointly issued the notice on adjusting the financial subsidy policy for the promotion and application of new energy vehicles. The notice said that in 2017, China’s subsidies for new energy vehicles declined as high as 20%, and a new regulation that local subsidies should not exceed 50% of the central subsidy was introduced. He also said that the subsidy standard for new energy vehicles will be gradually lowered from that year, and the subsidy policy will be withdrawn after 2020.
Notice on adjusting the financial subsidy policy for the promotion and application of new energy vehicles, screenshot from the official website of the Ministry of science and technology of the people’s Republic of China
Although the subsidies have declined, the “subsidies” for new energy vehicles in various provinces and cities still exist, just in a different form.
First, Beijing, Shanghai, Nanjing, Tianjin, Hangzhou and other cities have issued the policy of “buying new energy vehicles and enjoying the license plate of new energy vehicles free of charge, without wagging number or bidding”; in addition, many domestic provinces and cities such as Beijing, Shanghai, Hebei and Hubei have introduced the regulations of no restrictions on new energy vehicles on the road and no parking fee at the designated time of parking lot.
In the year of question 2020: the turning point of industry upheaval, what are new energy vehicles competing for? 》According to the article, since 2017, the new energy vehicle industry has begun to shuffle. Because of this, the competition between cities also began to extend to other fields related to new energy vehicles.
Multi dimensional battlefield between cities
“Those self driving test cars are road rollers.”
In fact, this sentence has become the common feeling of all residents living in Phoenix, the capital of Arizona. “For example, if a person stands on the street, three such autopilot cars can be seen in five minutes.” Phoenix residents said to yiou.
As early as 2015, Arizona governor Doug duchy signed an executive order in support of autonomous driving tests in the state.
Waymo, Google’s autopilot, began its road test and operation in Phoenix. According to techcrunch, waymo has tested 300 to 400 cars in Phoenix for two years.
Two years later, with the permission of Arizona government and Phoenix government, waymo opened waymo one taxi service to the public. Residents can call such a car just by clicking on their mobile phones. At that time, the taxi service was equipped with safety officers, and in 2019, waymo canceled the safety officers. Since then, Phoenix has become the first city in the world to cancel safety officers and realize the commercialization of self driving taxis.
Waymo self driving taxi in Phoenix City
Online travel has been mentioned in many articles that automatic driving has become an indispensable component of intelligent vehicles. In addition, according to the survey data of China Business Industry Research Institute, the global auto driving market will reach US $4.8 billion in 2018, and this year, it will reach US $7.03 billion.
As a result, many cities in China set foot on the track of striving to be “Phoenix City of China”.
In 2016, it is known as the “first year of automatic driving” in the industry. In that year, Shenzhen took the lead, announced its cooperation with the University of Michigan, and introduced the m-city project. To put it simply, this project is to simulate the real city environment and test the self driving car.
Before realizing the automatic driving vehicle, intelligent bus becomes the best choice. In 2018, the “alfaba intelligent driving bus” was launched in Futian Free Trade Zone, Shenzhen, which is also the first test run of intelligent bus on open roads in the world.
Guangzhou, which owns Jingchi technology, Xiaoma Zhixing and Xiaopeng automobile, also follows. In March of the same year, Guangzhou officially launched the construction project of the application demonstration area of intelligent networked vehicles and intelligent transportation, and plans to invest 4.6 billion to build a closed test field of intelligent networked vehicles.
Xiong’an new area is the first national level new area established by the State Council. It has reached cooperation with Baidu early on the implementation of automatic driving application. In 2017, the two sides announced to jointly build an intelligent demonstration of unmanned driving, and started the road test of L4 level automatic driving one year later.

Xiong’an is not the only company cooperating with Baidu. In October of the same year, Changsha municipal government announced that it had reached a comprehensive cooperation with Baidu, and opened its Apollo self driving taxi service in April last year, which is also the first self driving taxi service open to the public in China.
Although they are all self driving taxi services, they are still far away from waymo one.
According to Baidu, Apollo self driving taxis are still equipped with safety officers and technicians to ensure the safety of passengers. If Changsha citizens need to experience this service, they only need to call the bus on Baidu map app. After getting on the bus, they also need to communicate with the security officer to choose the destination.
Just as the public was still curious about the self driving taxi in Changsha, Shanghai immediately announced the same project with Didi.
In June last year, Didi travel opened its automatic driving service to the public for the first time. Users can sign up on didi app online. After the approval, they will be able to call automatic driving vehicles for free on Shanghai automatic driving test section. Like Baidu, Didi self driving taxis are equipped with safety officers.
Didi self driving taxi, tuyuan didi travel official micro
Now it seems that although both Changsha and Shanghai have implemented the self driving taxi projects, and Beijing, Shenzhen and Guangzhou are also carrying out relevant layout, the competition for “Phoenix City of China” has not been finally settled. Just like this, Wuhan, Suzhou and other cities are still entering the market.
In September last year, the national intelligent network connected vehicle test demonstration zone was officially opened in Wuhan, which means that Wuhan has also become a national city for the commercial application of unmanned driving. Just recently, Suzhou High Speed Railway New Town, Jiangsu Universiade group and T3 travel strategy conference were held in Suzhou, the first ecological operation alliance of autonomous driving in China. So far, Suzhou has become the first city in China to realize commercial scale of autonomous driving.
As a matter of fact, since last year, with the central government’s optimistic view on the power exchange mode, many cities have also focused on this field.
Taking Chongqing as an example, according to the plan, no less than 30 power stations will be built in the main urban area in 2020, and at least 1-2 public power stations will be built in each tourist attraction. In order to achieve this, Chongqing has introduced Changan Automobile, Geely Automobile and other automobile enterprises to realize the landing of the power station.
In September last year, the new energy power station jointly built by Chang’an Automobile and Ningde times and other partners was officially launched in Chongqing Olympic Sports Center. According to the relevant person in charge of Chang’an Automobile, Chang’an new energy power station can realize 30 second fast power change.
Coincidentally, just a few days later, Geely’s intelligent power station was also launched in Chongqing Liangjiang New Area. Geely also announced that 100 power stations will be built in Chongqing by 2021, and more than 200 power stations will be built in 2023.
Geely smart power station, tuyuan Geely Holding Group
Under the demonstration effect of the central policy and Chongqing, more cities began to promote the power exchange mode.
Since November last year, Wuhan, Baotou, Xuzhou and other cities have launched new energy vehicle power replacement operation demonstration projects. Among them, Wuhan United Dongfeng Motor Group Co., Ltd. signed a strategic cooperation agreement with State Grid Co., Ltd. and built the first smart power station. Baotou city also started the construction of ecological integration project of new energy vehicles for power grid.
From the new energy vehicle manufacturing, to the application of automatic driving, and then to the promotion of power station, the competition between cities for the tuyere of new energy vehicles has continued since 2014. So, why do these cities spare no effort to fight this war?
Why compete for new energy vehicles?
In fact, the competition and pursuit of tuyere always exist in the process of the development of many cities.
With the outbreak of the epidemic at the beginning of last year, many enterprises were unable to return to work. In order to ensure the survival of enterprises, the original offline business model was moved to online, and entrepreneurs and stars came into the live broadcasting room to bring goods. For a time, the business of e-commerce live broadcasting became a wind outlet.
In addition to the entry of many enterprises and giant players, many cities also scramble for this outlet through a series of supporting policies.
In April last year, Huadu District of Guangzhou issued the measures for supporting the development of live broadcast e-commerce in Huadu District of Guangzhou (Draft for public opinions), which indicated that it would provide different amount of house purchase subsidies for some excellent online celebrities of local enterprises. In May, Chongqing also issued the action plan for accelerating the development of live broadcast e-commerce in Chongqing, which proposed to actively develop live broadcast e-commerce and encourage the introduction of institutions In June, Beijing and Hangzhou issued relevant supporting policies.
According to the statistics of interface news, as of the end of July last year, at least 22 provinces and municipalities in China have introduced supporting policies related to e-commerce live broadcasting, in order to compete for more opportunities for e-commerce live broadcasting industry.
In addition, with the gradual recognition of the Propaganda Department of the CPC Central Committee and other departments, E-sports has become another hot spot for big cities.
In June 2019, Shanghai took the lead in issuing “several opinions on promoting the healthy development of Shanghai’s e-sports industry”, which clearly pointed out that it was necessary to build a “global E-sports capital” in three to five years; in the same month, Hainan Province and Tencent E-sports reached a strategic cooperation and announced that it would focus on building “Hainan International E-sports port”.
In August last year, Fu Hua, Vice Minister of the Propaganda Department of the CPC Central Committee, delivered an opening speech at the opening ceremony of E-sports Beijing 2020, expressing the welcome and concern of the competent government departments for E-sports and young lifestyle. Since then, Shanghai, Guangzhou, Shenzhen, Xi’an, Chengdu, Hainan and so on have all made clear the positioning of building E-sports centers.
What can these cities gain from the pursuit of tuyere?
To put it simply, the first is to seek novelty. In the past, whenever there are some new technologies or industries, we can see that many cities are making active layout, so that new industrial patterns or new industrial forms will appear in their own cities, so that city managers can obtain political achievements and take the lead in tuyere industry.

In addition, under such a series of layout, more talents can be attracted to live and work in the city. A few years ago, the “talent war” between many cities is still going on. From the talent introduction program to the opening of the settlement policy, and then to the subsidies for buying houses, all cities fight this “protracted war” through real money.
In retrospect, new energy vehicle outlets can also bring the above positive factors to cities, and even have more advantages than e-commerce live broadcasting and E-sports. “New energy vehicle manufacturing and related industries are still manufacturing industries in essence. For many cities in China, they play a huge role in promoting economic development and industrial upgrading.” Sun Tao, a practitioner in the intelligent automobile industry, said to the online travel.
In addition to these, the new energy vehicle itself has a more important significance – the entrance of the next generation of intelligent terminals.
“Cars in the future will be giant mobile intelligent terminals.” Wu Hequan, former vice president of the Chinese Academy of engineering, told the media at the China electric vehicle 100 people meeting. Because of this, Alibaba, Tencent, Baidu and meituan have begun to fight for this.
Behind these factories are Hangzhou, Shenzhen, Beijing and other cities. It can be imagined that with the advent of a new era, no city does not want to seize the opportunity to stand on the high ground of intelligent automobile industry faster.
“But in this process, there is also some uncertainty, because from the point of view of the pursuit of industrial outlets, some cities are really doing industrial layout, but there will be some cities just to catch up.” Sun Tao said.
For any industrial outlet, only when the industry is truly implemented, can it play its due value and bring about economic growth. Therefore, for every city that has participated in the battle for industry, seeing the wind outlet and chasing only completed the first step in the war.
(at the request of the interviewee, Sun Tao is a pseudonym.)
(statement: This article only represents the author’s point of view, not Sina’s position.)