Luca de Meo: his truths about Chinese electric cars in a “letter to Europe”

Luca de Meo (CEO Renault Group – CEO Ampere) launches a plea to European representatives, a few weeks before the European Parliament elections (June 6 to 9, 2024). In his “letter to Europe”, the senior manager of Renault Group takes stock of the market and the automobile industry, both linked to electric cars. Today, European car manufacturers “do not have the weapons” to fight against the effect, which we will describe as “supremacy”, led by China. Remember that Luca de Meo is also the president of the Association of European Automobile Manufacturers (ACEA). The “letter to Europe” written by Luca de Meo can be downloaded, free of charge (pdf format), in this article


In his 20-page “letter to Europe”, Luca de Meo recalls that the European electric car industry represents 13 million employees. Faced with Chinese car manufacturers and Chinese electric cars, these same 13 million jobs could be put in danger. Indeed, it should be remembered that China bet, earlier than Europe, and with huge subsidies, on electric cars ? Moreover, in China, needless to say, almost, that manufacturing costs are much lower than in Europe. Below, in photo, the BYD SEAL “made in China”.

In China, electric cars “sell like spring rolls”, even if spring rolls originate from Vietnam, in short. In numbers, in China's local automobile market alone, this gives 8.5 million electric cars sold in 2023. Outside its borders, this is 35% of Chinese electric cars exported out of all global production and 60% of global sales. As for Europe, it has been struggling for several months in terms of sales of electric vehicles and must therefore face a China which has taken a lead while being ultra-competitive in terms of prices.

Like a “cry of alarm”, Luca de Meo, presents seven recommendations that could enable Europe to better deal with China :

  1. Defining a European industrial strategy
  2. Bring all stakeholders around the table
  3. Put an end to the current system of stacking standards
  4. Adopt a horizontal approach and no longer just vertical
  5. Rebuilding raw material supply capacities
  6. Invent a hybrid economic and industrial model, defense then attack
  7. Do not call into question the “Green deal”

Luca de Meo notes, six challenges that Europe must also meet, facing Chinese electric cars :

  1. Decarbonization
  2. The digital revolution
  3. Regulations
  4. Technological volatility
  5. Price volatility
  6. Employee training

Luca de Meo did not stop there, because he also proposes, ten ambitious projects for Europe concerning electric carss:

  1. Promoting small European electric cars
  2. Tackle Last Mile Delivery
  3. Accelerate the renewal of the European vehicle fleet
  4. Develop charging infrastructure and V2G technology
  5. Achieve sovereignty over supplies of critical raw materials
  6. Europe must be competitive in semiconductors
  7. Standardize the software
  8. Working the industrial metaverse sector
  9. Unify battery recycling
  10. Boosting the potential of hydrogen (fuel cell)

Luca de Meo Letter to Europe Chinese electric cars Renault Group

Finally, for Luca de Meo, we must also take into account the “made in USA” electric car industry. There, the market is stimulated by the American government. So, can Europe and the United States really resist Chinese electric cars? Not in the short term, knowing that sales are not good, with many manufacturers relaunching the development of thermal blocks to sell more plug-in hybrids. Finally, will the fateful date of 2035 be reviewed by Brussels? It's very likely…


Photos: Renault and

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