The Future of the Car: Asia

China not only sells more electric cars than any other country, it also made the fastest. Meanwhile, Japan’s battery makers look set to dominate, while Honda and Toyota fix sights on a post-lithium future powered by hydrogen gas.

Government incentives last year were worth up to $15,000 per vehicle

Technological advances give Japanese groups an advantage

Manufacturers are scrambling to seal long-term deals for supply of lithium, cobalt and nickel

The three-year-old company is to start production of a seven-seater car in December

Honda and Toyota think the technology’s superior energy density will triumph over batteries

More than 100 groups are licensed to make vehicles but consolidation is unlikely

Internet-savvy Chinese are particularly comfortable with digital buying platforms

Good public transport, scarcity of parking and traffic jams are putting young people off driving