Tesla, MG, Seres, Ionity, Chargemap… These brands are shaking up the car market

Tesla, MG, Seres, Ionity, Chargemap… These brands are shaking up the car market


General Motors, Toyota, Renault, Fiat … For a long time, the big groups born for the most part in the first half of the 20th century dominated the world of cars and its ideas. It is true that they fought fierce battles among themselves, but they developed very similar methods of production and marketing. The transition to electricity favors the arrival of new competitors for the first time in decades. Start with Tesla.

Since the launch of its first high-performance model, in 2012, the American brand led by the eccentric entrepreneur Elon Musk has become the largest car market capitalization and the first electric manufacturer in the world with almost a million copies delivered. in 2021. with the opening of new production sites in Europe, in Berlin, and in China, in Shanghai, this company, technological and automotive, is giving itself a path to rapid growth. A success that its traditional competitors are now trying to copy, even if none can yet produce modest and efficient electric motors.

Chinese success

Tesla is not a unique example. In Europe, the arrival of Chinese brands locked to their domestic market for a long time is now a reality. The most important achievements are those made by MG, a brand owned by the state-owned Saic group, which produces electric models only in France. Its success depends on very competitive prices, but also on traditional means: “The fact of carrying the name of a historic English brand allows us to take advantage of the desire for a classic car, shows Julien Robert, sales director France.. Furthermore, we have chosen a conservative distribution method. You don’t buy an MG on the Internet, but from a dealer that is often already established locally: we have 130 today in France.”

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An effective strategy that has enabled it to sell 10,000 cars in our region since its arrival in May 2020. This manufacturer with international goals has already overtaken Renault in the UK, the European market where it is well established. And watch out: other Asian brands are following, such as Seres, owned by Dongfeng, another Chinese group, or Vietnamese Vinfast. Both have also been releasing their battery-powered models on the Old Continent for a few months.

From BlaBlaCar to Ionity: a revolution in consumption

The car thing isn’t the only thing that’s getting upset with new operators; its use also changes. The digital revolution has therefore enabled the development of vehicle integration thanks to dedicated applications. The biggest success in this area is that of BlaBlaCar, founded in 2003. After a slowdown caused by the health crisis, the rise in fuel prices allowed it to resume its growth by recording an increase of… 172% in the number of seats offered between January and March and thus exceed his 2019 marks.. They saw collecting cars on a daily basis as an effective way to reduce costs that seem difficult.”

The new characteristics imposed by the electric vehicle have also given rise to a completely new ecosystem, that of charging stations, a growing market that is beginning to be balanced. Among the new players, the name of the Ionity alliance is now part of the common vocabulary of drivers. It has established itself as an expert in fast road payments thanks to a network that should increase from 400 to 1,500 stations in 2025.

The problem of extensions offered in the area by various types of distributors has also favored the emergence of compatible “passes”, that is, cards that allow you to pay without taking out a new subscription. The French reference in this area is Chargemap, a program widely used to find and identify stations in France and Europe. “The badges were different depending on the network, so crossing France in an electric car was hell, explains Yoann Nussbaumer, its founder. Our passport was issued in 2017 after raising half a million euros. Today we cover almost all of Europe with 230,000 charging points.”


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The proliferation of these new producers and service providers makes it possible to measure the rate of change. The world of drivers, once loyal generation after generation to established brands, has been turned upside down in just ten years.


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