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China a key pillar for Vitesco, says CEO

By Li Fusheng Updated: 2020-10-29
Vitesco Technologies' CEO Andreas Wolf unveils the company's logo on Oct 1, 2019. [Photo provided to]

China will be an important pillar of Vitesco Technologies' electrification strategy, said the top executive of the German automotive supplier.

"(We have been for) more than 25 years active in China, and China will be the main player of our electrification strategy," said CEO Andreas Wolf in a recent online interview.

Vitesco, the former powertrain division of Continental, is a global leader in the development and manufacture of drive technologies for e-mobility.

Its product portfolio ranges from 48-volt mild hybrid technologies and key components for hybrids to full battery-electric powertrains like power electronics, battery management systems and electric axle drive.

"The growth potential in China is evident. As the market continues to rebound, the prospects will be even brighter," said Wolf.

Statistics from the China Association of Automobile Manufacturers show that China sold 138,000 new energy vehicles in September, up 66.7 percent year-on-year.

In the first nine months, sales of electric cars and plug-in hybrids totaled 734,000. The association expects their sales this year to exceed 1 million.

Wolf said the company will continue its strong presence in China, which is the largest market for both gasoline and new energy vehicles.

Vitesco has three production bases in China; a new research and development center is under construction in Tianijn.

The center, expected to start operation in 2021, will include a laboratory where electric drive technologies can be tested and validated.

Vitesco already runs a highly automated plant at the site, where an innovative, fully integrated electric axle drive system has been produced since 2019 for carmakers like Hyundai, PSA and China's Dongfeng Passenger Car.

Wolf said Europe will be another highlight of the company's global electrification strategy. He said local governments' subsidies are stimulating the popularity of electric vehicles in European countries. He said the United States will be an important market as well in the long run.