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[News] EV Market Faces Challenges, Including Price, Affordability, and Realistic Consumer Expectations

Once considered a driving force behind economic growth, the electric vehicle (EV) market is facing a reality check as consumers are becoming more practical about their needs due to rising inflation and high-interest rates. Automakers acknowledge that in times of inflation, electric vehicles won’t be on consumers’ radar in the coming years unless their prices are lowered.

In the third quarter, the U.S. saw a surge in EV sales, breaking the 313,000 mark, almost a 50% increase from the same period the previous year. The EV market share reached an all-time high of 7.9%.

However, this growth may be reaching its peak as major automakers are now either postponing their electric vehicle sales targets and production plans or resorting to price reductions.

For instance, Ford has extended the annual production target for electric vehicles to 600,000 units by one year, abandoned the goal of producing 2 million electric vehicles by 2026, and temporarily halted a $12 billion investment in EV projects.

General Motors has also abandoned its sales targets, and Honda has given up on its plans to jointly develop electric vehicles priced below $30,000 with General Motors. Tesla has postponed its super factory project in Mexico.

More manufacturers are resorting to price reductions, including Mercedes-Benz, Tesla, and Ford’s electric trucks, all of which are offering significant discounts.

Price vs. Affordability

Consumers are primarily concerned with the price difference between EVs and gasoline vehicles. In the U.S., most compact electric SUVs are priced at around $52,000, while similar gasoline SUVs cost only about $34,000.

According to Ford’s CEO, in the EV industry, exceptional products alone are no longer sufficient; they must also be cost-competitive. Elon Musk also noted that the high-interest-rate environment is unfavorable for market demand, and making products more affordable is essential to encourage people to make purchases.

However, even with price reductions and discounts, it seems that buyers remain unimpressed. U.S. dealers have observed that the next wave of buyers, unlike those who made impulsive purchases in the past couple of years, are now more focused on practical factors such as cost, infrastructure challenges, and lifestyle impediments.

Dealers are increasingly realizing that electric vehicles are a tougher sell when compared to traditional gasoline-powered cars.

Practical Considerations

Market analysts suggest that over the past decade of low-interest rates, consumers have increased their spending. However, as interest rates rise, consumers now find the need to be more frugal.

The price of EVs has gone beyond the affordability range of many consumers. The current high-interest-rate environment is also unfavorable for convincing consumers to explore immature automotive technologies.

A survey found that aside from price, consumers still worry about range anxiety and the lack of charging infrastructure. Up to 77% of respondents said these were the most pressing issues when considering EVs. Consumers are less likely to consider immature products when their budgets are tight.

The U.S. government aims to have half of all new vehicles sold be zero-emission vehicles by 2030. Just a few years ago, policymakers believed that Americans would adopt EVs without needing much persuasion. However, this optimism now appears to be overly idealistic.

For now, General Motors, Ford, and even Tesla are deciding to hold onto their cash reserves and redeploy them when the economic situation stabilizes. Toyota Chairman Akio Toyoda, who has consistently argued that pure EVs are not the only solution, should be feeling vindicated as he stated at the recent Tokyo Motor Show, saying that “People are finally seeing reality.

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(Photo credit: Pixabay)


World Governments Expanding Public Charging Piles, Projected 3x Growth to 16M by 2026 from 2023

TrendForce anticipates that by 2026, the global tally of public charging stations will soar to 16 million, marking an impressive threefold increase from 2023 figures. As this unfolds, the global ownership of NEVs—which includes both PHEVs and BEVs—will surge to 96 million. This sets the vehicle-to-charger ratio at 6:1, a significant drop from the 10:1 ratio observed in 2021. Notably, major players like China are paving the way; having set ambitious goals to achieve a vehicle-to-charger ratio of 2:1 by 2030, China is unquestionably a driving force in the global push to reduce this ratio.

Europe is steaming ahead with its net-zero blueprint, targeting the construction of a whopping 17 million charging stations by 2030. America, though, presents a contrasting picture. With a little over 200,000 charging stations currently, the Biden administration aspires to hit the 500,000 mark by 2026. Unfortunately, this will coincide with a projected NEV count of 15 million, exacerbating the vehicle-to-charger ratio to 32:1 Around the same period, Europe and China are projected to sport more modest ratios of approximately 9:1 and 4:1, respectively. Using Europe’s ratio as a yardstick, the US charging infrastructure ambition may need to be bolstered by at least three to four times.

NEV owners globally grapple with a maze of charging standards. Prominent among these are the US standard CCS1 (Combo), the European standard CCS2 (Combo), Japan’s CHAdeMO, China’s GB/T, and Tesla’s NACS standard. Europe and China offer a simpler scenario for their citizens by adhering to a single domestic standard. In contrast, the US is a battleground, with both CCS1 and NACS standards vying for dominance. While adapters provide a temporary bridge between the two, the rapid rise of NACS kindles apprehension among CCS1 aficionados about their future stake.

A diverse array of charging standards across the globe means charging equipment manufacturers must adopt flexible product strategies to cater to different market specifications. Spotlighting Taiwanese firms: Hotron Precision’s charging cables, Longwell’s and SINBOS’s integrated charging systems are all laying tracks across GB/T, CCS1, and CCS2 standards. A feather in the cap for Hotron Precision is its induction into Tesla’s supply chain, while Longwell and SINBON primarily cater to North American charging enterprises. Riding the wave, following proclamations by giants like Ford, GM, and Volvo favoring the NACS standard in North America, charging station behemoths like Zerova and LITEON have thrown their hats into the NACS ring.

From 2025, the landscape will shift dramatically as countries step on the gas to phase out gasoline-fueled vehicles. While the ramp-up of charging station infrastructure still lags, auto giants are bracing themselves to spearhead the charging station market boom. Case in point: Titans like GM, Mercedes-Benz, BMW, HONDA, Hyundai-Kia, and Stellantis are joining forces to spin off dedicated charging infrastructure companies. Furthermore, TrendForce offers a nugget of advice for Taiwanese manufacturers: to stay ahead of the curve and serve North American clientele more effectively, consider setting up shop locally. With Pegatron and Delta Electronics already marking their territory in Texas, the focus for Taiwanese firms should be on nimbleness and adaptability, ensuring they remain unshackled by a single standard.


[News] BYD Sees China Mastering Core NEV Technology and Robust Industry Chain

According to the news from, BYD has reached a groundbreaking milestone, producing its 5 millionth new energy vehicle. The company asserts that China now possesses critical new energy vehicle technology and a robust industry chain.

BYD contends that a globally recognized brand stands as a vital hallmark of an automotive powerhouse. Throughout the annals of automotive industrial history, every automotive giant has harbored a world-renowned brand. For instance, the United States boasts General Motors, Ford, and Tesla; Germany takes pride in Volkswagen, Mercedes-Benz, and BMW; Japan and South Korea have cultivated their own globally esteemed brands. Presently, China lacks a universally acknowledged world-class automotive brand.

Yet, recent reports from highlight that China has already ascended to the status of a new energy vehicle juggernaut, wielding pivotal core technology and a comprehensive industrial framework, thereby freeing the automotive industry from constraints. Objectively, China possesses the foundation and capability to forge a world-class brand. Subjectively, the emotional desire to establish such a global automotive brand exists.

BYD also anticipates that by 2025, the penetration rate of new energy vehicles in the Chinese market will surpass 60%. In 2022, Chinese brands forayed into over 50% of the market for the first time, with projections indicating that within 3 years, their market share will escalate to 70%. In a recent development, data from the China Association of Automobile Manufacturers (CAAM) indicates that in the first half of this year, China’s complete vehicle exports surged by 76.9% YoY, surpassing Japan and claiming the global lead for the first time.



Catching Up on Tesla, See The Big Rise of Chinese Automotive Brands

TrendForce’s latest research finds that global sales of new energy vehicles (NEVs), which encompass battery-electric vehicles (BEVs), plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs), and fuel-cell vehicles (FCVs), rose by 70% YoY to 2.87 million units for 3Q22. Of the quarterly total, BEV sales accounted for 2.147 million units and registered a YoY growth of 75%, whereas PHEV sales accounted for 714,000 units and registered a YoY growth of 57%.

Tesla placed at the first place in 3Q22 BEV market, BYD is the biggest threat

In the global ranking of BEV brands by vehicle sales for 3Q22, Tesla took first place with 344,000 units. While Tesla managed to maintain its market share at 16%, its lead over second-placed BYD in sales figure had narrowed further. BYD sold 259,000 BEVs in 3Q22, posting a massive YoY growth of 182%. It is also worth noting that the gap between Tesla and BYD in BEV sales has been smaller than 100,000 units for two quarters straight. SGMW and Volkswagen respectively stayed at third and fourth in the ranking, showing no change from the previous quarter. As for fifth to 10th, TrendForce especially points out that these places were all taken by Chinese brands. Looking at the global top 10 BEV brands for 3Q22, MG Motor (that has been acquired by SAIC Motor) and Geometry entered this group for the first time mainly thanks to the robust demand from China. Conversely, Hyundai, Kia, and XPeng Motors were pushed out of the top 10. XPeng stated that the deliveries of its new electric SUV G9 would ramp up this October. Whether XPeng will remain in the group of top 10 for 2022 depends on its performance in the fourth quarter.

Huawei’s big plan in the automotive market: the rise of Chinese brand “AITO”

Turning to the global ranking of PHEV brands by vehicle sales for 3Q22, BYD was at the top with 279,000 units and held a market share of 39.1%. As for other PHEV brands, they still were unable to raise their market shares above 10% even though they posted a QoQ increase in vehicle sales. Looking at the two German luxury car brands that are involved in the PHEV segment, Mercedes-Benz rose to second place in the ranking because of a QoQ gain for vehicle sales in both the home market and China. BMW saw falling sales for its PHEVs in Europe, so it posted a decline in units and slipped down in the the ranking. Chinese brand AITO entered the group of the global top 10 PHEV brands for the first time in 3Q22 and was immediately placed fifth. AITO is a brand under Seres and is in close cooperation with Huawei, and its vehicle models feature many technologies from Huawei as well. Going forward, the market performances of AITO’s vehicles will actually be an important indicator of Huawei’s progress in the development of an automotive business.

Moving into 4Q22, TrendForce believes that autumn releases of new vehicle models and year-end promotional activities will be the main drivers of car sales worldwide. Consumers have been waiting for new vehicle models or new generations of the existing vehicle models. This is one of the reasons why some carmakers saw declining vehicle sales in 3Q22. Therefore, these same carmakers could still get a boost in annual vehicle sales from their performances in the fourth quarter. As for the Chinese NEV market, it will stay fairly hot in 4Q22 as car brands operating there continue to provide incentives for vehicle purchases. Furthermore, Chinese consumers still want to take advantage of their government’s NEV subsidy program before its termination.


Bucking Trends NEV Market Grew in 1Q22 with Global Sales Exceeding 2 Million Units, Says TrendForce

According to TrendForce data, total sales of new energy vehicles (NEVs including battery electric vehicles, plug-in hybrid electric vehicles, and fuel cell vehicles) in 1Q22 was 2.004 million units, an annual growth rate of 80%. Battery electric vehicles (BEV) demonstrated the strongest growth with sales reaching 1.508 million units. Plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs) sold 493,000 units. Growth in NEV sales did not come easy, as global auto market sales (regardless of powertrain type) fell by 7% YoY in 1Q22 due to factors such as the chip shortage, Russian-Ukrainian war, and China’s pandemic lockdown and prevention measures.

In terms of BEV brands, Tesla’s sales in 1Q22 exceeded 310,000 units, ranking first with a market share of 20.5%. Chinese automaker BYD ranked second with 143,000 units and a market share of 9.5%. BYD announced in April that it would stop producing fossil-fueled vehicles and transform fully into a NEV manufacturer. Its BEV sales rose sharply by 271% in 1Q22 compared to the same period last year. Wuling, a subsidiary of SAIC-GM, has been ranked second since the launch of the Wuling Hongguang MINI in 2020 but dropped to third place in 1Q22. The main contributor to this was the multitude of models positioned as miniature and low-priced launched in the past year such as the Chery Ant and Changan Benben. As similar products arrived on the market, sales competition hindered growth.

In terms of PHEVs, BYD once again broke its quarterly sales record. Sales volume in 1Q22 reached 142,000 units, with a market share of 28.8%. As more PHEV models gradually appear in the market, it has become increasingly more difficult to capture a large market share. It is worth noting that the sales volume of PHEVs in the European market was lower in 1Q22 both when compared with the same period last year and when compared to 4Q21, affected the performance of some European brands.

TrendForce expects that most automakers will adopt a strategy of prioritizing the production of EVs. Therefore, continued growth in the sale of NEVs is expected in 2022. However, automakers will be under greater cost pressure this year. In particular, the Russian-Ukrainian war has greatly increased the cost of power batteries. This has caused automakers to increase their prices. Some countries including China will withdraw car purchase subsidies which dampens the market for low-priced mini-cars that previously supported the rapid growth of NEVs. Factors such as global inflation will become variables in the future growth momentum of NEVs.

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