Beijing realizes that young domestic automakers can never beat global giants with traditional combustion-engine technology. The government has therefore bet on EVs, which it believes provide local companies with an opportunity to leapfrog rivals. Will the government's wishes come true? Probably not.
Dozens of Chinese EV startups have sought to become the Chinese answer to Tesla, but none of them have yet succeeded. Baoneng, a new contender that has just acquired Qoros, an automaker that once had big plans to enter Europe, might just have a chance.
In recent years, Beijing has forced the consolidation of state-owned industries such as steelmaking and mining in a bid to cut costs, develop new products and turn a profit. Now it's the turn of the auto industry as three companies seek to create a global auto giant.
Fiat Chrysler should seriously consider an offer from Great Wall for the Jeep brand. A deal would make perfect sense for Great Wall, which would gain access to the North American market and valuable technology. But also for FCA, which will likely get a higher price from the Chinese automaker, because it specializes in SUVs.
Geely has emerged as the largest domestic carmaker in China this year, but despite its worldwide ambitions, the automaker still has a long way to go before becoming a truly global player, one that international brands have to reckon with.