Turkish EV market sees growing presence of Chinese cars

(Xinhua) 08:59, March 12, 2024

Electric vehicles of China's MG brand are displayed at an MG sales center in Istanbul, Türkiye, March 4, 2024. (Photo by Safar Rajabov/Xinhua)

ISTANBUL, March 11 (Xinhua) -- Over the past four years, the Turkish market has witnessed a steady surge in the presence of Chinese electric car brands, garnering increasing attention from Turkish consumers.

Industry insiders attribute this growing interest to the allure of high-quality, high-performance vehicles offered at affordable prices, coupled with comprehensive service offerings and energy-efficient features.

Since MG's introduction to Türkiye in 2021, a slew of other Chinese brands swiftly followed suit, bringing the total count to 12 by February, as disclosed by the Automotive Distributors' and Mobility Association (ODMD) in its latest sales report.

MG's brand awareness skyrocketed to 79 percent last year, earning MG Türkiye the "Fastest Growing Brand" accolade from ODMD.

BYD Atto 3 and the MG 4, both Chinese EV models, ranked third and fourth in the best-selling electric car list in February in the country, according to the ODMD.

The ODMD, one of the leading sectoral associations in Türkiye, has 32 members representing 52 international brands as of the beginning of 2024.

Semih Eryukseldi, an industry veteran with nearly 14 years of experience in the automobile sector in Istanbul, attributes the burgeoning interest of Turkish consumers in Chinese cars to their attractive price-performance ratio.

"Chinese manufacturers have effectively conveyed to Turkish consumers that affordable electric cars are within reach," he remarked during an interview with Xinhua at a Chery brand showroom on Istanbul's Asian side.

"Turkish consumers have come to realize that they can acquire well-equipped, high-performance electric cars at reasonable prices," he added.

Grsel Berberoglu, an Istanbul resident who has been driving an MG electric car for the past eight months, commended the substantial support provided by Chinese brands, particularly in terms of fuel efficiency and affordable maintenance services.

"Amidst escalating petrol prices, Chinese electric vehicles have significantly enhanced fuel efficiency," he noted. "Moreover, they offer cost-effective maintenance."

Industry insiders predict that the market share of Chinese brands in the Turkish market, which surpassed 4.5 percent in 2023, is likely to reach 10 percent this year.

"If Chinese brands maintain their current pricing strategies and continue offering high-quality products in Türkiye, they are poised to secure a substantial market share in the near future," Eryukseldi said.

Echoing Eryukseldi's sentiments, Dilara Cuhadaroglu, an MG Türkiye product manager said, "China has indeed emerged as a powerhouse in the electric car sector."

"With major manufacturers boasting cutting-edge technology and visionary approaches, they are setting the pace for global trends," she added.

An MG 4, a Chinese electric vehicle model, is connected to a charging port in Istanbul, Türkiye, March 6, 2024. (Photo by Safar Rajabov/Xinhua)

(Web editor: Zhang Kaiwei, Liang Jun)


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