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There were record breaking sales for battery electric vehicles (BEVs) in the second quarter of 2023, with nearly 300,000 sold in the US alone.
Sales growth was driven in part by government incentives (US federal credits) and price cuts implemented by some automakers, with the average price paid for an EV down by 20% in June compared to last year. Tesla, in particular, used a dynamic pricing model to stimulate demand, delivering 466,140 vehicles in the April to June period.
Volkswagen’s all-electric car sales grew by 52% year over year, delivering 94,800 units in Q2. The BEV share of total sales was 7.4% in H1, compared to 5.6% in H1 2022. The company reports an order bank of more than 200,000 BEVs going into H2. VW also expects a “gradual easing” of “logistical bottlenecks” going into the second half, which will mitigate the company’s muted cash flow.
An improved trend in incoming orders is also expected, after a period of consumer reluctance, driven by reduced subsidy programmes, long waiting times and high inflation. These concerns are illustrated by GlobalData’s company filings analytics, which identified 900 mentions of “logistics”, 857 mentions of “inflation”, and 190 mentions of “subsidies” or variants thereof in the April to June period.
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EV adoption will be “slower than expected”, says Ford CEO Jim Farley
Meanwhile, Ford increased its Ford Model E revenue from $700m in Q1 to $1.8bn in Q2. However, while increasing its sales, losses also widened, as the company posted a loss of $1.1bn in the April to June period.
The company expects to be at a full-year EBITDA loss of approximately $4.5bn for the Model E, citing the “pricing environment”, “disciplined investments in new products and capacity” and “other costs”.
Moreover, the planned annual production rate of 600,000 electric cars has been pushed back until 2024, as Farley cites “slower than expected” EV adoption.
Electric vehicle sales were also sluggish for General Motors, who sold just 15,652 in Q2 – down from 20,670 in Q1.
Automotive services organisation, Cox Automotive, believes that the EV market is most likely heading towards the “Trough of Disillusionment” of the Gartner Hype Cycle, saying that “collaboration across many parties will be necessary to push through.”