Feature: Car dealers optimistic about Chinese EVs' rising popularity in Iraqi market

(Xinhua) 10:26, November 10, 2023

BAGHDAD, Nov. 9 (Xinhua) -- Riding the tide of the global electric vehicle (EV) industry boom, Iraqi dealers started to import EVs into the country in the past few years. Among many competitors in the market, Chinese brands are gaining increasing popularity for their high quality, low cost, and wide variety of choices, they said.

Ali al-Rubaie, sales manager of Nahj al-Iraq company, the exclusive distributor of China's Great Wall Motor Company (GWM) in Iraq since 2022, told Xinhua that many Iraqi automotive companies would like to import cars from Chinese EV manufacturers which are taking the lead in the industry.

"Our company introduced this ORA Funky Cat electric car to the Iraqi market in 2022, and it was our first imported car of such kind," said Al-Rubaie.

He believes that the model makes it easier for Iraqi buyers to switch to an electric car, as it is equipped with a decent battery and charger package, allaying buyers' concerns about charging.

Hussein Mazin, a sales department worker at Nahj al-Iraq, said that although the prices of electric cars in Iraq were slightly higher than that of gasoline-powered ones, but people have come to realize that EVs were less expensive as they don't need to pay for fuel and require less maintenance.

In addition, "the Chinese car amazed customers with advanced technology, high durability, and noise insulation. It is a fully interactive smart car, and the driver can use its various functions easily and quickly through voice commands," Mazin added.

Mazin said that his company is keen to promote the amazing features of the Chinese electric cars, which have begun to gain popularity in neighboring countries and the rest of the world.

"The electric car market has begun to see good growth," al-Rubaie said, stressing that consumers are now more willing to use environmentally friendly cars.

Mohammed al-Husban, showroom manager of Iraq's al-Sadiq Company, said Iraqis had become aware of China's rapid progress in the car industry as some Chinese companies had already outperformed many of their reputable competitors.

Some expensive models of Chinese EVs have already been accepted by Iraqi consumers, according to al-Husban.

Two buyers in Baghdad spent 250 million Iraqi dinars (about 156,000 U.S. dollars) on Hongqi E-HS9, an electric full-size luxury SUV made by Hongqi, a brand owned by the Chinese automaker FAW, while another six buyers in Erbil, the capital of Iraq's semi-autonomous Kurdistan region, bought the model through the company since the last quarter of 2022, said al-Husban.

Over the same period, the company sold 20 Bestune T77 cars and EVs from another Chinese brand BYD in Baghdad, while 150 BYD cars were sold in Erbil, al-Husban added.

"The numbers of sales show that there is an emerging EV market in Iraq, and it is improving and promising," said al-Husban.

(Web editor: Zhang Kaiwei, Zhong Wenxing)


Related Stories