The global EV market is expanding at a rapid pace and China is determined to lead as it invested more than $60 billion to support the industry and transition to an electric future by 2035. But the U.S. is also getting more serious about going electric. President Joe Biden has announced a goal to reach net-zero emissions by 2050 followed by massive investments to build a green infrastructure. Despite being smaller in size, the European market is also going full speed ahead towards an all-electric future.
Many automakers and part manufacturers on both continents have revealed ambitious goals for the undergoing decade, with some announcing purely electric lineups in as little as four years. Consumers might not even have to wait that long with many new models coming over the next 12 to 24 months. Here’s a little summary of the EV developments in the US and the EU.
The EV king entered the Chinese market in 2019 and has seen rapid growth. Going back to the beginning of the story, Tesla Inc (NASDAQ: TSLA) launched its adventure with a roadster, which was followed by the Model S hatchback and the Model X SUV. It broadened its brand appeal with the Model 3 sedan and the recent Model Y crossover. Its pickup truck called the Cybertruck and second-generation roadster are coming too. Getting ready for a new chapter in its revolutionary book, Elon Musk named himself the “Technoking of Tesla’ and Zach Kirkhorn the “master of coin,” although both of them will keep performing their CEO and CFO functions.
Canada is not likely to be left out of this new era as Worksport Ltd (OTC: WKSP) announced this morning that it raised an additional $3 million USD in addition of its recent raise of $4 million bringing the total over $7 million USD. Worksport is an innovative manufacturer of tonneau covers for both pickups and EV Pickups. The company has already partnered with Atlis Motor Vehicles and Hercules Electric Vehicles to configure its TerraVis™ solar technology for their upcoming pickups. With the raised funds, its tonneau cover system and the TerraVis COR™ mobile energy storage system, Worksport aims to become a Tier 1 OEM manufacturer of solar-panel tonneaus for electric vehicle makers. This additional capital will support its strategic North American and Chinese manufacturing investments as well as the development of its revolutionary Terra Vis system.
Ford Motor Company
Ford Motor Company (NYSE: F) stated its passenger vehicles will be 100 percent emissions-free in Europe by 2030 and although this commitment doesn’t apply to the U.S., it started selling an electric SUV, the Mustang Mach-E, as well as an electric version of its commercial Transit van. Its most eagerly anticipated model is the electric version of F-150 pickup with the production scheduled to start in mid-2022.
The Detroit giant includes brands like the Buick, Cadillac, Chevrolet, and GMC brands. General Motors (NYSE: GM) has a long history with EVs that began in the late 1990s although it feels it is just entering the game. At the moment, it only has the Chevrolet Bolt EV on the market, but it plans to have an all-electric model lineup by 2035, with pure EVs planned to make 40% of its models by 2025.
Chevrolet recently announced an upcoming SUV version of the Bolt EV called the Bolt EUV, which will go on sale in mid-2021. GM also unveiled the GMC Hummer EV, an impressive off-road truck that is scheduled to arrive early next year. An SUV version of the Hummer EV will also be revealed this year, as well as an electric Silverado-based pickup, and a pair of Cadillac EVs, the Lyriq SUV and the Celestiq sedan but the timeline for the last two is vague.
Nissan North America
Responsible for one of the first mass market EVs available in the U.S., Nissan has been a pillar of the growing electric fleet. Nissan has sold half a million Leaf EVs across the globe over the past decade and its next North America electric model that should go on sale by the end of the year is a small SUV named the Ariya.
Stellantis North America
Early in 2021, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (NYSE: FCAU) merged with Groupe PSA, the company that houses the French Peugeot and Citroën brands, to become Stellantis. In the U.S., the brand’s portfolio includes the Alfa Romeo, Chrysler, Dodge, Fiat, Jeep, Maserati, and Ram trucks.
Other than Fiat’s electric version of the 500 city car that it had for a while, Chrysler’s plug-in hybrid version of its Pacifica minivan, and the Ram pickup with a mild hybrid powertrain., Stellantis’ American marques are light on the electric front. But, 10 new electrified models are planned to enter the market by the end of the year, while specifics were not provided. In February, Jeep announced it would soon have a plug-in hybrid version of the Wrangler and that it plans that all models will come with electrified tech by 2025.
Volkswagen Group of America
Volkswagen Group (OTC: VWAGY) has Audi, Bentley, Bugatti, Lamborghini, Porsche, and Volkswagen under its umbrella. By the looks of its recent Power Day event where the group revealed its roadmap to boost its battery expertise and secure its supply chain, this transformation will be unprecedented and fast. The corporation plans to launch 70 pure electric vehicles and 60 hybrids by the end of the decade, some of which are already in production. In the US alone, it aims for EVs to make 50 percent of its sales by 2030. Its most recent addition is the ID.4 which arrived to the US this month. It is a small electric SUV that is aimed at mass market consumers. It’s only a matter of time before all brands from the German giant’s portfolio enter the EV race and VW is in it for the win.
Many thought that it’s too late for the U.S. to catch up to China and Europe but as the old saying goes, “when there’s a will, there is a way”. This also means that smaller players have a shot such as Rivian who is expected to deliver the world’s first pickup truck.
Coca Cola Made a Sparkling Recovery
Coca-Cola’s (NYSE: KO) business was hit extra hard during the COVID-19 pandemic as people avoided gatherings with events being cancelled across the globe. As its business model is heavily reliant on these point-of-sale drinks, the pandemic translated into sharp volume drops for fiscal 2020 while peers like PepsiCo (NASDAQ: PEP) enjoyed booming demand at supermarkets and warehouse retailers. However, on Monday, the beverage giant showed it rebounded by beating on earnings with demand in March hitting pre-pandemic levels.
Net sales rose 5% as they amounted to $9.02 billion, exceeding estimates of $8.6 billion. Organic revenues grew 6%, but unit case volume was flat compared to a year earlier. Demand improved every month of the quarter, driven by markets like China where uncertainty concerns around the virus eased.
Coca Cola reported a net income of $2.25 billion, or 52 cents per share. This is a drop compared to last year’s $2.78 billion, or 64 cents per share. Excluding items, earnings amounted to 55 cents per share, exceeding the 50 cents per share expected by analysts surveyed by Refinitiv.
Coca Cola has done a great job focusing on what it can control
Through the pandemic, executives slashed costs by finding ways to cut supply chain, marketing, production and packaging expenses, leading to rising profitability even as peer PepsiCo’s margins fell.
At the beginning of the year, management said the first quarter would be the hardest of the year, but that the scale of the recovery that follows would depend on big variables like the pace of vaccine distribution.
Quarterly demand was unchanged from a year earlier as North America and Western Europe take longer to recover from the pandemic but global unit case volume in March returned to 2019 levels.
While the central North American business is still under pressure, growth in India, China and Latin America managed to offset those declines. Nutrition, juice, dairy and plant-based beverage segment experienced a 3% volume growth as it was fueled by higher demand in China and India. Hydration, sports, coffee and tea segment was the hardest hit with volumes shrinking 11%. The coffee business declined 21% as Costa cafeswere heavily impacted by the lockdowns. The hydration category that includes Dasani and Smartwater reported volume declines of 12% as consumers across the globe bought less single-use water bottles. Demand for tea products fell 6%, whereas sports drinks saw volume decline slightly by 1%.
Uncertainty still remains
Back in February, management stated that the giant has positioning itself to come out of the crisis targeting faster growth and higher margins compared to its pre-pandemic figures.
The company restated its full-year forecast, with organic revenue growth expected in high single digits and adjusted earnings growth expected in the range between high single digits to low double digits. India and parts of Europe are reintroducing lockdowns due to spikes in new Covid-19 cases, while Latin America and Africa are expecting slower vaccine distribution and embracing for new waves. While vaccinations are rising in many countries such as the U.S., U.K., the flip side is there’s actually a new high in terms of cases as the weekly number of new cases has just hit an all-time peak.
Although April has started well for Coke, the looming risk of new lockdowns threatens to reverse that progress.
Global EV Updates
The EV race is on as the 19th annual Shanghai Auto Show delivered a ton of new electric and tech-centric models this week. Chinese, European and U.S. automakers showed off their latest offerings in every price segment, showing us that an all-electric future is closer than ever.
New models revealed at the Shanghai Auto Show
Volkswagen Group (OTC: VWAGY)-owned Audi shared the spotlight with its Chinese partner companies FAW and SAIC, showing four world premieres: the Audi A6 e-tron concept vehicle, an updated Audi Q5L, the Audi A7L and an SUV study named Audi concept Shanghai which is still under wraps.
Volkswagen used the opportunity to reveal its third EV in its ID line, the VW ID.6, which is designed specifically for the Chinese market.
Xpeng Inc (NYSE: XPEV) revealed its third vehicle.
Warren Buffet-backed BYD is seeing sales increasing steadily on the “Han” the luxury electric sedan series that launched last year. The line has been named after China’s Han dynasty and this flagship series consists of three electric vehicles and one hybrid.
Geely Holdings Inc.(OTC: GELYF) took up a lot of the Shanghai Auto Show floor with several of its brands, including a brand new one. The Chinese automotive conglomerate’s brands Polestar, Volvo Cars, Lynk & Co, Geometry and the new Zeekr all brought their EVs to the show.
Daimler AG (OTC: DDAFI)-owned Mercedes showed its growing EQ brand, with the EQB, the compact mass-market all-electric SUV and EQS, the first all-electric luxury sedan which will be the first model introduced to the US.
Nio Inc (NYSE: NIO) officially debuted its flagship sedan, expected to begin production of the ET7 in the coming months, with a launch scheduled for Q1 2022.
SAIC-GM-Wuling Automobile Co., which is a joint venture between SAIC Motor Corp., General Motors (NYSE: GM) and Liuzhou Wuling Motors Co., revealed their latest vehicle which is the budget-friendly Hong Guang Mini EV that comes with a price tag as low as $5,000.
Toyota Motors (NYSE: TM) finally revealed its EV strategy, announcing to introduce 15 all-electric vehicles, including seven Toyota bZ branded models, by 2025.
The world’s first electric pickup will debut in the US
Although the Chinese government created a robust and competitive market, with over 400 automakers producing EVs for drivers around the world due to subsidies and investment in charging infrastructure, the world’s first electric pickup is coming this year and the US upstart Rivian could even beat Tesla Inc (NASDAQ: TSLA) in being the first to launch. Atlis Motor Vehicles and Hercules Electric Vehicles are also preparing their electric pickups who will be configured with TerraVis™ solar powered technology by Worksport Ltd (OTC: WKSP) who just announced plans to list on the NASDAQ. The developer and manufacturer of high quality, innovative and attractively priced tonneau covers, as well as of revolutionary solar-powered system TerraVis™ for light-duty trucks, has laid a solid foundation with its robust product line. It also finished the design of TerraVis COR™ mobile battery system, an extension to the TerraVis solar fusion that offers a remote source of power to a wider consumer market.
The US still has a long way ahead
The Biden Administration is determined to make America the global leader in EV production with $2.65 trillion infrastructure plan that allocates $174 billion for developing its EV industry by installing 500,000 publicly accessible charging ports, introducing point-of-sale rebates for consumers and electrifying the federal fleet which consists of 650,000 vehicles. The US has a long way to go to clean up transportation’s dirty transportation, but the infrastructure plan sends a clear message that electric vehicles are a federal policy priority. Although the US automotive industry is positioned to emerge from an emissions-choked past into a battery-powered future, it has a lot of catching up to do as the whole world is very much in the EV race.
Toyota Finally Reveals Its EV Strategy
At the Shanghai Motor show, Toyota Motors (NYSE: TM) has finally announced an electric vehicle strategy that will result in 15 new battery-electric vehicles released by 2025, along with revealing the 2023 Subaru all-electric SUV.
The electric SUV concept
The Japanese giant revealed the BZ4X that will serve as a starting point for future models with the BZ branding which stands for “Beyond Zero”. Toyota did not reveal any details or specifications for the vehicle, but it did announce it should be released in China and Japan later this year. The all-electric SUV will be built on Toyota’s new e-TNGA dedicated EV platform it developed with Subaru while using its all-wheel-drive technology. Toyota owns a small stake in its fellow Japanese automaker. Though it’s just a concept, the BZ4X seems to be near completion.
A new era
Toyota said it would release 70 electrified models by 2025, including battery-electric, hydrogen fuel cell, and gas-electric hybrids, for a range of “diverse choices”. fellow Japanese automaker Subaru.
Automakers like Nissan (OTC: NSANY), General Motors (NYSE: GM), Ford Motors (NYSE: F) and Volkswagen (OTC: VWAGY) that are already selling pure battery-electric vehicles also revealed its newest electric additions. We’ll know more about how serious Toyota is in embracing electric vehicles when it provides details about powertrain details and range, as well as the types of vehicles it will be making.
The home planet strategy
Besides finally taking off the covers off its first dedicated EV, Toyota announced its goal to become carbon neutral by 2050 as part of a new “home planet” strategy. Throughout its global business activities, Toyota will promote electrification strategies that contribute to reducing CO2 emissions throughout the entire lifecycle of a vehicle, while consulting with governments how to promote electrification.
Toyota is the latest global auto giant to announce ambitious EV plans to expand its product line-up and decarbonise its operations over the coming decades. The Japanese auto giant has been facing mounting criticism in recent years over its perceived failure to keep up with its peers on the EV front, as it instead sought to fortify its leadership position in the hybrid market. But, if history has taught us anything, it is that Toyota executives know very well what they are doing.
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