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The image quality suffers from the lack of grayscale expression capability when the simple accumulation of light emission is applied to express grayscale in alternating current plasma display panels (ac PDP). To solve the problem, an adaptive subfield coding (ASC) method for driving ac PDP is proposed, in which subfield vector is adaptively figured out based on the normalized histogram of input image every television field. The calculated subfield vector can express the most grayscale information of input image. And then the number of sustain pulses in each subfield is adjusted according to the calculated subfield vector. Simulation results show that the proposed method can eliminate the dynamic false contours in ac PDPs and overcome the lack of grayscale expression capability caused by the simple-accumulation-lighting-mode. It could provide good grayscale expression in ac PDPs.