EV sales slowing, GM and Toyota see more hybrids now

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Nov 18, 2005
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Barra just announced that they are going to sell what the market demands which is more hybrids. I could have told her that years ago. They shouldn't have stopped the Volt in the US. Now, maybe they will bring in the Velite6 sooner than later. Toyota says that it sees hybrids to continue as part of their sales past 2030.

Overall it looks like global EV sales are cooling for most manufacturers, including Tesla, though Volvo reports that Polestar sales are good in Europe.
 
Disagree. Global sales are not declining. Growth in global sales is slowing. Very different things.

Folks that are unsure about wanting BEVs say they want hybrids or plug-in hybrids, but they don't buy them either.

Its all about price. People will buy a cheaper BEV over a more expensive HEV or PHEV. And that shift is already here.

The legacy makers are all struggling to produce low cost BEVs, not bc the tech is expensive, but bc their designs and methods are expensive. And folks don't want to buy overpriced product.

Will they buy tons of overpriced HEVs and PHEVs in a year or two from now? I doubt it. HEV and PHEV sales trends are already lagging BEVs. And BEV demand is still growing, just not exponentially. This is just as expected.

In other news:

Saudi Aramco is acting like people in a few years aren't going to buy as much oil as they do now.

Apparently THEY think BEV sales will be a lot higher in a few years.

Who you gonna believe?
 
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You are right, slowing is a better choice of words. I will correct the title.

This piece aired tonight. I agree on the charging infrastructure need. Electrify America is not doing a great job.
 
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HEV and PHEV sales numbers are limited by supply, both by manufacturing of established models and limited choices from OEMs. Sales numbers would increase if there were units sitting on lots like is the case with most BEVs.

Saudi Aramco is already curtailing production, they are currently only producing 9 MMbbl/d of 12MMbbl/d available, no reason to invest at a time of high development costs in wells that stay shut-in. This is a result of the OPEC+ cartel cutting supply to inflate oil prices, not true supply/demand economics.
 
My take is they realize Tesla is way ahead in the manufacturing game. Their next model will be out within 24 months with a 36-48 to ramp production. No one has a competitor that will be priced similarly.
Kia has some decent EVs.

Anyone seen Jeep sales numbers? I haven’t but they are basically not offering ICE is some states while others won’t even stock the the hybrid.

While I agree EV sales are slowing they are still growing. Teslas stock took a pounding and still might be over valued. But now they don’t have competition from the big 3.

2024 will be more of the same but as we enter 2025 and Tesla allows other makes on its chargers. We will see changes. PHEV can’t compete on price. So in a volume driven sector (think cheap cars) it’s a looser. It could compete for a while in the large vehicle space. Think GVW over 9-10k pounds.

And of course all this competitive pricing depends on the cost of oil.
 
I think (strong) HEVs and PHEVs will continue in what I consider the 'margins'... large vehicles, regions with very cold weather or very expensive electricity. But even there, they have a delicate balancing game... their sales will depend a LOT on the price of gas, and their markup relative to the price of a conventional ICE vehicle (or mild hybrid).

Some people will buy them for dollar and cents reasons, but the makers have to thread a needle on MSRP and profit margin, and they haven't been setting low cost of production records lately. And even if they get there in the future, a couple quarters of low gas prices due to some geopolitics or OPEC wrangling could really sting sales on these new vehicles.

The (mostly younger) folks seeking lower emission cars are just gonna jump to BEVs as soon as they are cheap enough. If Tesla won't bring their prices down, they will scream until the Chinese brands are sold here. But that tranche of buyers is not going to buy a lot of PHEVs, outside of the 'margins' listed above.

Tesla's stock goes up and down, and I don't care (much) bc I don't do individual stocks. The current 'down' has many causes: BYD outsold Tesla in China last quarter for the first time. China's slowdown will impact global EV sales. China pulling back subsidies will lead many EV startups there to go bankrupt (contagion?).

And then there is all the EV FUD in the US these days, just as legacy maker earning season is coming around as Ford and GM EVs are totally wiped out. The recent Ford and GM announcements are intended to reassure unsophisticated mom and pop investors from abandoning their stock. Engineering those HEV and PHEV vehicles is more difficult and expensive and will take longer than with BEVs. That's their lifeboat?

Tesla has been dropping its prices and seeing plenty of demand. Some see that as a market weakness (as it would be in the legacy car business). But their internal costs have dropped >10% in the last 12 mos, and this decline curve is expected to continue until about 2030 at least, at which point BEVs will be stupid cheap compared to ICE, just like how (utility) solar has gotten stupid cheap. Tesla is just riding that cost curve down, as demand follows its (bumpy) logistic curve up.

But some investors say... its the beginning of the end! Sales are falling (wrong), they have to drop prices to maintain sales (uh, ok yes), their profits are declining (nope), and they will soon be bankrupt and blow away (I wouldn't bet on it) bc EVs are just a fad sold to stupid rich folks (wanna buy some shorts)?

The wild card here is govt support. China is stepping its support back, and Tesla stock tanks. In 2023 carbon credits caused the legacy makers to give Tesla $2B in a cash transfer, as much as the latter cleared on profits on global sales! EU is getting more protectionist on its EVs, to slow the Chinese EV adoption there... this could slow sales growth there. Political changes in all these regions could dent or accelerate EV sales significantly (but I don't see that happening, currently).
 
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HEV and PHEV sales numbers are limited by supply, both by manufacturing of established models and limited choices from OEMs. Sales numbers would increase if there were units sitting on lots like is the case with most BEVs.

Saudi Aramco is already curtailing production, they are currently only producing 9 MMbbl/d of 12MMbbl/d available, no reason to invest at a time of high development costs in wells that stay shut-in. This is a result of the OPEC+ cartel cutting supply to inflate oil prices, not true supply/demand economics.

Agree. The makers haven't been selling HEVs and PHEVs bc they haven't thought they could make a profit at the prices they would sell for. Given that Ford and GM promised lots of cheap BEVs at scale, and then didn't produce them, I'm not sure we can believe them now with this promise to flood the market with affordable HEVs and PHEVs either. I think its more vaporware.

The Aramco decision could be spun as capitulation to the reality that N American producers will be able to produce tons of oil at a profit for the next 10-15 years.
 
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Let’s use the Toyota Sienna as an example. Will redesign to get h $7,500 tax credit that is now offered upfront at time of purchase? How does this compete with a 7 seat Model Y long range. (Yeah they are different but I would considered buy both as my next vehicle).

So for the cost conscious it’s all about tax credits, gas and electricity prices. A LOT could change in the next 12 months.

Notes
The Sienna is only available as a hybrid (I don’t think it’s plug in yet) so could possibly reduce the operating costs a bit but Toyota battery is small.
Upgrading to a 7 seat model Y costs $3000.

IMG_9592.png
 
Disagree. Global sales are not declining. Growth in global sales is slowing. Very different things.

Folks that are unsure about wanting BEVs say they want hybrids or plug-in hybrids, but they don't buy them either.

Its all about price. People will buy a cheaper BEV over a more expensive HEV or PHEV. And that shift is already here.

The legacy makers are all struggling to produce low cost BEVs, not bc the tech is expensive, but bc their designs and methods are expensive. And folks don't want to buy overpriced product.

Will they buy tons of overpriced HEVs and PHEVs in a year or two from now? I doubt it. HEV and PHEV sales trends are already lagging BEVs. And BEV demand is still growing, just not exponentially. This is just as expected.

In other news:

Saudi Aramco is acting like people in a few years aren't going to buy as much oil as they do now.

Apparently THEY think BEV sales will be a lot higher in a few years.

Who you gonna believe?
Or is that because China is falling off a cliff in terms of demographics and production?

A8064752-A5E9-443F-A640-906B89A1E146.png
 
High car prices and high interest rates are not helping EV sales. This needs to improve. GM in China is able to produce a nice family EV for $15,500 USD. Yet they can't in the US at twice that price. Why?

Another fly in the ointment is weight. When highway safety systems and parking lot structures standards were laid out, only about 10-15% of American vehicles were light trucks. Now more than 50% are pickups and SUVs. The design weight was 5,000 lbs max. Now compact EVs can weigh more than that. A 4 ton Rivian just decimated the guard rail design assumptions. Will it be long before DoTs across the country are asking for increased licensing fees based on weight?

EVs are coming and will happen, but the transition is not trivial and there are a lot of issues to solve. Charging networks in many parts of the country still suck. The latest NEVI new charging structure in Kingston, NY is a bust, in spite of spending a lot to get it going. Electrify America is doing a poor job as compared to the Tesla charging network. Their systems at best are glitchy which doesn't help concerns of range anxiety.


Global dependencies on materials is a major problem with China holding some key cards. Supply chain disruptions can and will happen. It would help if EVs slimmed down and were less extractive of rare materials. Recycling of EV components and replacement battery systems need to get much more robust. This all will happen eventually, but one does not build out infrastructure overnight and we are woefully behind compared to Europe or China in addressing key issues. Instead of doing it right from the start, it appears that in some cases we are just throwing money at issues. We need to do better.
 
Or is that because China is falling off a cliff in terms of demographics and production?

View attachment 324161
Its a global market, they could sell elsewhere.

Otherwise, I'm inclined to agree, except I wouldn't call it a cliff (yet). I think China will 'Japanify', plateauing out to developed country growth rates, with an average GDP per capita similar to Poland, and poor rural districts and urban elite districts that looks more like Japan in terms of GDP per capita. At least that's my WAG.

Politically, the question is how does the CCP keep the people happy with the above trajectory, after promising the moon and the stars (passing Japan and the US) for the last 20 years?
 
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I do hope they are able to to find some sort of stability. A power vacuum if the CCP has the potential to be real exciting.

Japan was able to build plants in other countries and use their labor for production. Could a culture (government) that wants to control all activities accept the compromises that that would entail?
 
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I could see a Chinese car company setting up an EV assembly plant in Mexico for favorable tax status in the US. They would still manufacture the key components in China.
 
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I'm curious if BYD could even make a run at Tesla, even manufacturing in Mexico. The BYD Seal (direct competitor to the Model 3) currently sells in Mexico starting at about $45k USD. The Model 3 starts at $42k in the US.

Seems BYD looses its advantage selling in North America.

The US auto industry is going to dig in it's heels and attempt to keep Chinese manufactured (or Mexican manufactured cars with Chinese parts) out of the US at all cost. Look at how Japanese and Korean cars took over the market in decades past, they won't let that happen again with China, it could bankrupt them.

Quite frankly I think the possibility of modified tariffs could be enough to keep BYD from seriously considering expanding into the US market, they're more focused on Europe right now anyway. As the current 27.5% tariff is doing the trick.
 
I'm curious if BYD could even make a run at Tesla, even manufacturing in Mexico. The BYD Seal (direct competitor to the Model 3) currently sells in Mexico starting at about $45k USD. The Model 3 starts at $42k in the US.

Seems BYD looses its advantage selling in North America.

The US auto industry is going to dig in it's heels and attempt to keep Chinese manufactured (or Mexican manufactured cars with Chinese parts) out of the US at all cost. Look at how Japanese and Korean cars took over the market in decades past, they won't let that happen again with China, it could bankrupt them.

Quite frankly I think the possibility of modified tariffs could be enough to keep BYD from seriously considering expanding into the US market, they're more focused on Europe right now anyway. As the current 27.5% tariff is doing the trick.
Why expand into the US market for the next 5 years? There is so much uncertainty. I don’t see the risk being worth it. And unfortunately you Canadians are just going to be along for the ride. Sorry.

Politics aside. I think there will be plenty of opportunities for a company like BYD to buy significant portions of certain automakers or whole brands.

I believe is Tesla could sell the model 3 for a profit at a 25k price they would. If they can’t now I don’t see any chance anyone else could. There next model cold hit that price point by 2027. Sales will be strong. Tesla has fended off any real competition for another 4 years. As much as Musk spoke negatively about high interest rate, they probably gave him another 2-4 without and serious competition. Maybe someone has a secret design that will be unveiled but we will get 18-24 months heads up as the tooling to complete woh Tesla is massive and you can’t easily conceal a giga press. And if you don’t have batteries you don’t have an EV.

The market place need good competition. Driving 2.5 hours to a Tesla service center sucks.
 
The BYD issue depends on whether you are thinking short term (next few years) or long term... like 6+. A LOT can happen in a rapidly evolving market between now and then, and that long term is where all the money is (bc I think the US will be >50% EV new cars in 2030).

Musk was scoffing at BYD as recently as 2018. And last quarter BYD shipped more EVs in China than Tesla did. With some $$$ help from the Chinese govt, ofc.

It is clear that BYD is the only company that Tesla sees as competition at this point. Elon has looked at Ford and GM as 'dead/zombie companies' for several years now, and said as much. Tesla's offerings and pricing in China are set by a price war with BYD. And the resulting innovations and cheaper processes are then passed to the EU plant, and then last shipped off to the US. Implying that Tesla sees the US as a non-competitive 'private garden' at this point, where it can charge a lot more for EVs, run a generation (18 mos) behind, and still clear plenty of profit. Home turf advantage I suppose.

So, when will BYD show up here? That is a political question. Protectionism says never, populism says sooner (to get the consumer the cheapest car). And if you have two supposedly protectionist and populist parties, what will happen? Can't say.

But I will predict that if Europeans are buying nice EVs that cost half or 2/3rds of the US MSRP in 4-5 years... the US people will demand fair access.
 
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The latest NEVI new charging structure in Kingston, NY is a bust, in spite of spending a lot to get it going. Electrify America is doing a poor job as compared to the Tesla charging network. Their systems at best are glitchy which doesn't help concerns of range anxiety.
I haven't used a Tesla DCFC, so I can't directly compare (though I believe what I hear about reliability and ease of use). I do think Electrify America gets a bit of a bad rap. Their early DCFC stations were not very reliably up, but they improved a lot and were running very reliably along the I-81 and I-95 corridor between my house in Central NY and Richmond, VA. I have noticed a slight degradation recently, but nothing that warrants all the doom and gloom.

The Rivian driver probably doesn't realize that the first DCFC stop did a better job of warming his battery than the vehicle pre-conditioning did, which is likely why the second stop had faster charger times. Sorry to break the bad news to him, but 100 kWh/h charging on a 20 degree day is pretty reasonable, especially given that his truck was probably not parked in a warm garage in NYC.

Otherwise, I agree that broken credit card readers, bad screens, weird connection problems, etc. shouldn't be tolerated. My experience with a number of other Evolve NY DCFC sites have not mirrored his - they have card readers that work, the stations are up, and charging was easy. My only complaint about the Evolve NY funded charges is that they all seem to use a different payment company, so it is not solving the problem of having so many apps on your phone to buy charging time.

The goal should be that you get out of your car, insert a card into the slot, and plug the cord in and it works 100% of the time. I don't think we are there yet (Tesla may be closest, or may be there, for all I know, excepting the credit card slot). It needs to be like the gas fill-up experience to be acceptable to most people, and the DCFCs have to be right off the highway and not tucked in some out of the way location that you need to find (this is especially unpopular with women, I believe). It's not complicated - make it easy like getting gas and put them right on the side of the road under well-lit structures.
 
I haven't used a Tesla DCFC, so I can't directly compare (though I believe what I hear about reliability and ease of use). I do think Electrify America gets a bit of a bad rap. Their early DCFC stations were not very reliably up, but they improved a lot and were running very reliably along the I-81 and I-95 corridor between my house in Central NY and Richmond, VA. I have noticed a slight degradation recently, but nothing that warrants all the doom and gloom.

The Rivian driver probably doesn't realize that the first DCFC stop did a better job of warming his battery than the vehicle pre-conditioning did, which is likely why the second stop had faster charger times. Sorry to break the bad news to him, but 100 kWh/h charging on a 20 degree day is pretty reasonable, especially given that his truck was probably not parked in a warm garage in NYC.

Otherwise, I agree that broken credit card readers, bad screens, weird connection problems, etc. shouldn't be tolerated. My experience with a number of other Evolve NY DCFC sites have not mirrored his - they have card readers that work, the stations are up, and charging was easy. My only complaint about the Evolve NY funded charges is that they all seem to use a different payment company, so it is not solving the problem of having so many apps on your phone to buy charging time.

The goal should be that you get out of your car, insert a card into the slot, and plug the cord in and it works 100% of the time. I don't think we are there yet (Tesla may be closest, or may be there, for all I know, excepting the credit card slot). It needs to be like the gas fill-up experience to be acceptable to most people, and the DCFCs have to be right off the highway and not tucked in some out of the way location that you need to find (this is especially unpopular with women, I believe). It's not complicated - make it easy like getting gas and put them right on the side of the road under well-lit structures.
Tesla’s charging is super easy. Park and plug in. That’s it. Your account get charged. No screens, no card readers. If the car is unlocked you can charge it.
 
The goal should be that you get out of your car, insert a card into the slot, and plug the cord in and it works 100% of the time.

I thought that was how it was. I assumed pay at the pump so to speak.

The picture you paint is mildly disturbing, lol.
 
I thought that was how it was. I assumed pay at the pump so to speak.

The picture you paint is mildly disturbing, lol.
The goal should be you don’t need to swipe a card all payments are handled automatically. No screens no buttons no readers. Plug charge unplug. Done.
 
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If you say so, lol. I’d be perfectly happy choosing how to make a payment.
 
The US auto industry is going to dig in it's heels and attempt to keep Chinese manufactured (or Mexican manufactured cars with Chinese parts) out of the US at all cost. Look at how Japanese and Korean cars took over the market in decades past, they won't let that happen again with China, it could bankrupt them.
It's not just BYD. Volvo (Geely) is poised to do this already with the EX30.
 
I thought that was how it was. I assumed pay at the pump so to speak.

The picture you paint is mildly disturbing, lol.
That's the way it should be, but for some reason, the card readers mysteriously fail, pretty consistently. I am wondering if this is so that the company can avoid payments to the credit card companies? I mean, card readers on gas pumps have worked well for a long time so why are they so frequently failing on EV chargers?
 
Maybe installed by the same company that services McDonald’s ice cream machines?
 
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