In the ever-evolving landscape of electric mobility, November 2023 has brought forth a dynamic array of developments that propel us further into a sustainable automotive future. As we navigate the latest milestones, Eco Wheels in Motion is here to unveil the electric mobility highlights that have graced the global stage this month. From the surge in electric vehicle (EV) market share in the UK to the collaborative endeavors shaping the future of EV charging infrastructure, this month’s insights underscore the growing momentum of eco-friendly transportation solutions.
EVs Claim 24.9% of UK Car Market, BMW Tops
Overview of October's EV Market Performance:
- In October, plugin EVs accounted for 24.9% of the UK auto market, a YoY increase from 21.5%.
- Plugin hybrids saw their highest share in two years.
- The total auto volume reached 153,529 units, up 14.3% YoY.
- BMW led the BEV market in October.
Breakdown of Plugin Market Share:
- In October, 15.6% were full battery electrics (BEVs), and 9.3% were plugin hybrids (PHEVs).
- This compares to August 2022 figures of 14.8% for BEVs and 6.6% for PHEVs.
- PHEVs have seen growth due to improved models offering over 50 miles of electric range.
- BEVs showed marginal YoY growth in share.
Growth in Volume and Year-to-Date (YTD) Performance:
- BEVs grew by 20.1% YoY, reaching 23,943 units in volume.
- PHEVs experienced substantial growth at 60.5%, with 14,285 units.
- YTD, BEVs grew by 34.2% and took a 16.3% share.
- PHEVs saw 36.7% growth with a 7.1% share.
Ranking of EV Brands:
- All plugless vehicle categories lost share YoY.
- BMW claimed the top spot for BEV brands in October.
- Tesla was second, with the Model Y and Model 3, and Audi took third place.
- MG Motor, which usually ranks higher, was fourth in October.
- Several other brands, including Volkswagen, Kia, Polestar, Vauxhall, and Peugeot, had relatively quiet months.
- Volvo had a stronger month, and Honda also performed relatively well thanks to the new e:Ny1 model.
3-Month Picture and Future Outlook:
- Over a 3-month period, Tesla held a significant lead, with MG Motor in second place.
- Premium German brands BMW, Mercedes, and Audi were closely competing for the 3rd to 5th spots.
- Some historically mass-market brands lagged behind niche brands like Porsche and failed to make it into the top 20.
- The article mentions upcoming tougher minimum targets for Zero Emission Vehicle (ZEV) sales in the UK starting January 1st.
- The weak state of the UK economy, including low GDP growth, high inflation, and high-interest rates, has affected consumer willingness to invest in expensive BEVs, leading to a rise in fleet sales and leasing.
German Sales Up 5% in October on Soaring Electric Vehicle Demand
- Overall new-car sales increased by 5% in Germany during October.
- Total new-car sales reached 218,959 units for the month, based on data from the KBA motor transport authority.
- Sales of battery-electric cars rebounded, contributing to the overall growth.
Electric Vehicle (EV) Trends:
- Sales of full-electric cars experienced a notable surge, rising by 4.3% to 37,334 units.
- The increase in electric car sales follows a dip in September, attributed to the conclusion of government incentives for business buyers on August 3.
Brand Performance - Winners and Losers:
- Notable winners in October include Citroen (up 74%), Jeep (up 53%), Dacia (up 41%), and Fiat (up 23%).
- Among German brands, BMW and Audi both saw a 20% increase, Mercedes-Benz recorded a 3.8% rise, and Opel sales rose by 16%.
- Market leader Volkswagen brand experienced a decline, with sales falling by 15% during the same period.
European EV Sales Growth Slows, Ambitious 2030 Projections Hold
Industry Reality Check:
- Automakers confront a reality check as ambitious electric car sales targets clash with cost-conscious consumers in the real world.
- Fitch Ratings analyst Steve Brown notes a shift, stating, “It feels like the early adopters have adopted.”
Forecast and Resilience:
- Despite panic, forecasters like Schmidt Automotive Research (SAR) foresee a sales plateau by 2024, with expectations of a strong resurgence between 2025 and 2030.
- UBS, acknowledging a slowdown, maintains a robust European forecast up to 2030.
Potential Relief for Europeans:
- Schmidt Automotive suggests potential relief for European markets as the anticipated competition from China’s competitive EVs faces delays due to shipping capacity constraints.
Automaker Setbacks and Responses:
- Warning signals emerged with Ford reporting significant losses in its EV business, attributing it to a Tesla-induced price war.
- Major automakers, including General Motors, Honda, Mercedes, VW, and Toyota, responded with production cuts, target revisions, and strategic changes.
Market Challenges and Adjustments:
- UBS revises its global long-term EV market share forecast to 47% in 2030, down from 54%.
- Anticipated challenges in Western markets include high consumer uncertainty, possibly related to prices, residual values, and battery longevity, along with diminishing subsidies.
Local research house deems achieving 10,000 EV charging stations by 2025 a challenging task.
Charging Station Goal and Current Status:
- Malaysia aims to deploy 10,000 EV charging stations by 2025, comprising 9,000 AC chargers and 1,000 DC fast chargers.
- Presently, there are 1,200 charging stations in operation, consisting of 1,000 AC chargers and 200 DC fast charging points.
Challenges and Concerns:
- Affin Hwang Investment Bank (AHIB) suggests achieving the goal faces challenges related to economic viability, EV adoption rate, cost and investment considerations, and reliable electricity supply.
- Concerns are raised about the uneven distribution of DC charging stations and their correlation with electric car ownership patterns.
Government Initiatives and Incentives:
- The report questions the effectiveness of government incentives for EV charging operators.
- Malaysia Automotive, Robotics, and IoT Institute (MARii) outlines nine initiatives to foster EV charging infrastructure development.
Market Dynamics and Profitability Challenges:
- Limited interest in the sector persists due to extended payback periods, high initial costs, and low utilization rates.
- EV sales for the first nine months of the year account for just 1% of the total industry volume (TIV), posing challenges for potential entrants.
Malaysia's Position in the EV Market:
- Malaysia, with substantial investments in automotive-related projects, particularly in EV battery technologies, aims to position itself in the EV supply chain.
- The report discusses Malaysia’s potential as a competitive hub for EV production, acknowledging competition in Southeast Asia and emphasizing the country’s flexibility to attract global EV players.
Polestar Collaborates in Extensive V2G Initiatives in Gothenburg, Sweden with Key Stakeholders
Project Overview and Stakeholders:
- Polestar collaborates on a large-scale Vehicle-to-Grid (V2G) project in Gothenburg, Sweden, funded by the Swedish Innovation Agency Vinnova.
- The project involves key stakeholders such as Svenska kraftnat, Goteborg Energi Nat, Vattenfall Eldistribution, Easee, and Chalmers University of Technology.
Business Models and Scalable Use Cases:
- Polestar, along with partners, aims to explore potential business models for V2G and trial scalable use cases applicable across regions.
- The project focuses on finding ways to integrate electric vehicles into the energy grid for mutual benefit.
Global Collaboration and Roadmap:
- Polestar extends collaboration to California with the California Energy Commission and EPRI for a pre-study, funded by Vinnova, creating a roadmap for implementing V2G services.
- The collaboration aims to contribute to the development of V2G services in California.
Bidirectional Charging Technology and Virtual Power Plant (VPP):
- Polestar’s bidirectional charging technology allows Polestar 3 cars to both charge and discharge energy back to homes or the electricity grid.
- To manage V2G integration, Polestar is developing a Virtual Power Plant (VPP) that calculates collective battery capacity and optimizes charging or discharging based on grid demand and battery longevity.
Potential Impact and Future Plans:
- V2G solutions have the potential to turn EVs into flexible energy resources, supporting electricity grids and providing benefits to individual customers and communities.
- The Gothenburg pilot project is set to commence in the first half of 2024, aiming to be one of Europe’s largest V2G pilots, while the California pre-study is scheduled from December 2023 to October 2024.
As we draw the curtain on the electric mobility chronicles of November 2023, it’s evident that the wheels of progress in sustainable transportation are turning with remarkable vigor. From the commendable rise of EVs in the UK and Germany to the resilient projections for the European EV market, the month has unfolded as a chapter of growth and challenges. The ambitious pursuit of 10,000 EV charging stations by 2025 and the collaborative V2G initiatives in Gothenburg exemplify the concerted efforts to reshape the infrastructure supporting electric vehicles.
Eco Wheels in Motion remains your compass in navigating the electric mobility landscape, and as we close this chapter, we anticipate a future where sustainable transportation continues to redefine the way we move and embrace a greener tomorrow.