Jan 14, 2020

Volkswagen projected to be largest EV manufacturer by end of decade

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Data: Wood Mackenzie; Chart: Andrew Witherspoon/Axios

Volkswagen won't meet its electric vehicle targets, but it'll come close enough to become the world's largest EV manufacturer by decade's end, a new analysis finds.

Why it matters: The new projections from the consultancy Wood Mackenzie offer a piece of the puzzle as to how the increasingly competitive EV market will shake out this decade.

What it found: Wood Mackenzie's base case sees VW manufacturing 14 million vehicles by 2028.

  • That's well short of its plan to reach 22 million that's part of its wider climate goals, but would still "represent 27% of all global EVs, requiring 30% of battery cell supply," the firm said.

The big picture: It shows how legacy automakers will be huge players even as newer entrants — most notably Tesla — grab lots of attention. As of 2018 VW was only in 10th place when it comes to EV manufacturing, Wood Mackenzie said.

  • "VW views battery electric vehicles (BEVs) as the most effective means of CO2 reduction. Currently, there is very little overlap between the top ten automakers and top ten BEV makers. In fact, only three companies — Nissan, Hyundai and VW — appear on both lists," the consultancy said.

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Sluggish sales throw the future of electric vehicles into uncertainty

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

The flurry of high-profile electric vehicle rollouts lately makes it easy to look past a big problem for the sector: tepid consumer demand means it's unclear when the EV age will begin in earnest, at least in the U.S.

Driving the news: Several recent stories underscore how drivers remain cautious about ditching gas pumps for plugs — even as automakers make big bets on bringing a slew of new models to market.

Go deeperArrowJan 22, 2020

GM is eating Tesla's exhaust

Tesla Model 3. Photo: Smith Collection/Gado/Getty Images

While Tesla shares went into Ludicrous Mode this week, GM executives were on Wall Street pitching investors on their own vision of an electric, self-driving future. But as Bloomberg notes, the market isn't buying.

Why it matters: GM may be investing billions to transform its business for the future, but to many investors, Tesla's lead in the fledgling electric vehicle market is seen as insurmountable.

The great electric pickup production race

GMC Hummer's grille and the Tesla cybertruck. Photos courtesy of General Motors and Tesla

Automakers are competing to make the buzziest, strongest, fastest electric truck that would fare well in a dystopian future — albeit one with a reliable grid and eco-conscious drivers.

Driving the news: OK I'm being flip (it's Friday!), but yesterday brought news that GM is indeed reviving the gas-guzzling Hummer as a fully electric and powerful "super truck" with seriously gaudy specs.