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Chinese EVs dominate car show

Vehicle bookings at the recently concluded Thailand International Motor Expo were up by 45% from a year ago, with Chinese electric vehicle (EV) manufacturers drawing strong interest, according to organisers.

Total bookings at the 12-day event were 53,248, compared with 36,679 at the 2022 version of the popular annual event.

The top three brands in the EV segment that attracted the most visitors were from China: Changan, BYD and Aion, said Kwanchai Paphatphong, chairman of the Motor Expo Organising Committee.

He said sport utility vehicles gained the most bookings, accounting for 57.3%, following by sedans (18.3%), hatchback cars (10.4%), pickups (9.5%) and others (4.5%).

The event drew up to 1.5 million visitors, while the online version recorded 1.09 million views.

The value of car purchases was 72 billion baht, said Mr Kwanchai.

In a related development, the Auto Parts Industry Club and the Automotive Industry Club under the Federation of Thai Industries (FTI) Are teaming up to establish FTI Future Mobility-ONE, a unit aimed at supporting the development of the Thai automotive industry.

The FTI wants to improve the automotive industry and align it with new technological developments, said Suphot Sukphisarn, chairman of the Auto Parts Industry Club.

The unit is working with global car companies from Japan, China, Europe and the US to move the industry forward, he said.

The FTI expects Thailand to produce 2.5 million vehicles in 2030, with 70% next-generation cars based on internal combustion engine (ICE) technology, and the remainder zero-emission cars in the EV segment.

“The automotive industry still wants the government to support ICE technology and step up efforts to discuss free trade agreements with countries that want to buy ICE cars,” said Mr Suphot.

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