Sales of electric vehicles set to surge past 2,000 this year


Surging demand for electric vehicles (EVs) should see at least 2,000 sold this year, said Surapong Phaisitphatthanaphong, spokesman of the Federation of Thai Industries' Automotive Industry Club.

Total sales for the first nine months of 2020 (January to September) stood at 1,842. In 2008, only 138 EVs were sold in Thailand, but that figure jumped by 481 per cent to 802 in 2019.

Surapong attributed their surging popularity to EVs’ falling price, the growing number of charging stations, and high purchasing power of wealthy consumers.

He added that while the cost of a Battery Electric Vehicle (BEV) was still high at around Bt1 million, the price is dropping. He expects more people to buy BEVs once the price falls to around Bt800,000.

He also predicted that BEV makers who applied for tax privileges from the Board of Investment in 2019 will start investing in Thai production facilities next year, to cater for increasing demand in both local and overseas markets.

He added that production of all autos in Thailand totalled 150,345 in September, down 11.29 per cent year on year but up 28.22 per cent from August.

The number of vehicles produced from January to September was 963,066, down 38.76 per cent year on year. The industry is on course to meet its target of 1.4 million units this year provided there is no second wave of Covid-19.

Domestic sales of vehicles in September totalled 77,433, down 4.1 per cent year on year but up 12.41 per cent month on month.

Domestic sales from January-September totalled 543,219 units, down 22.1 per cent year on year. Total sales this year are expected to exceed the targeted 700,000 if there is no Covid second wave.

Thailand exported 63,941 vehicles in September, worth a total Bt36.762 billion. Export volume was down 34.45 per cent year on year, while revenue fell 28.90 per cent year on year but rose 11.39 per cent month on month.

Exports of finished vehicles from January-September totalled 521,45, a drop of 36.49 per cent year on year. The export value stood at Bt288.21 billion, down 31.85 per cent year on year. Exports are on course to meet the 700,000 unit target this year if there is no second virus surge in foreign markets.