Home » How Ford Plans To Beat Chevy In The Electric Car Wars

How Ford Plans To Beat Chevy In The Electric Car Wars

Ford Tourneo Ev
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I grew up in truck-loving Texas and the Ford v. Chevy rivalry felt real. It felt important. People adorned their rigs with stickers of a cartoon child urinating on the logo of the opposing forces. While pickup dominance is still important, the battlefront is shifting towards determining which company will be the #2 electric automaker by volume behind Tesla. GM is ahead, but Ford’s setting itself up for the long-term.

Today’s Morning Dump is going to be a touch EV heavy because the news forms a perfect little narrative that previews the years 2025/2026, which is going to be the most important period for the automotive industry since 1973.

Vidframe Min Top
Vidframe Min Bottom

Here’s my central premise: The company that’s going to win isn’t the one who can build the best cars, it’ll be the one who can build the most cars.

Ford Secures Tons And Tons And Tons Of Lithium

Ford Blueoval City By The Numbers

Sticking with the theme that the Electric Car Wars™ are in full effect, I shall now trot out the old military cliché that soldiers win battles, but logistics win wars. In the case of electric cars, the materials needed to make batteries are the key logistical component.

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Ford has a big chat with investors later this week where it’ll outline its plans to improve its business prospects and one thing worth bragging about is the coordinated announcement of three different deals to generate enough lithium hydroxide–a key component in battery production–to get closer to the company’s goal of building 2 million EVs a year in 2026.

Here are the deals:

  • 13,000 tons (annually) of lithium hydroxide from Canada’s Nemaska Lithium.
  • 100,000 tons over five years from Albermarle Corp (whose lithium comes largely from Chile, Australia, and Nevada)
  • An undisclosed amount from EnergySource Minerals’s Project ATLiS in Imperial Valley, California.

This is a big deal. The 100,000 tons from Albermarle, which should start being delivered in 2026, alone is enough to help make about three million batteries.

Because of Inflation Reduction Act sourcing requirements, there’s going to be a huge fight for lithium mined from places that will allow vehicles to qualify for the full EV tax credit. It’s not clear what price that Ford is agreeing to, of course, but there’s a belief that lithium prices will go lower over time as more sources come online. Did Ford offer a slight premium to secure supplies?

Either way, Ford is pushing ahead with its two massive battery factories in Kentucky and Tennessee to make sure it stays the arsenal of our new, greener democracy.

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Australian Lithium Is Probably Going To Count Towards EV Tax Credits

Australia is a lithium rich country with a lot of arid land ideal for the kind of salt flat brines utilized most often for production of the key battery ingredient. Australia also has a bunch of other minerals helpful in making electric cars. Wouldn’t it be convenient if batteries made from Australian supplies helped vehicles qualify for EV tax credits?

Big shocker, but news out of Australia today is that the United States and Australia have agreed to work together to develop the country’s critical minerals industry.

Per Reuters:

“The climate, critical minerals and clean energy compact is an ambitious agreement,” Australian Prime Minister Anthony Albanese told parliament on Monday.

“It will expand and diversify our clean energy supply. It’ll promote the sustainable supply and processing of critical minerals and support the development of clean hydrogen, battery technologies and other clean energy products.”

The deal also paves the way for Australian suppliers of these minerals, and renewable energy, to be treated as domestic suppliers under the U.S. Defense Production Act.

Emphasis mine. It’s a big deal and, also, good news for Ford, which you might remember from nine paragraphs when it secured an agreement with a company that owns part of a lithium facility in Australia.

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Can GM Build As Many EVs As It Wants?

2024 Chevrolet Equinox Ev 3lt 116

If you’re a ten-year-old, the year 2025 is impossibly far away. If you’re a, let’s say, 114-year-old automaker, 2025 is basically here already. General Motors plans to build a lot of electric vehicles and is at the start of an aggressive product rollout that includes curiosities like the Cadillac Celestiq and GMC Hummer EV, and more mainstream vehicles like the extremely compelling 2024 Chevy Equinox EV.

The big question is: Can they actually make as many cars as they can sell? I say this, because the Cadillac Lyriq rollout has been sub-par, GMC has delivered all of two Hummers so far through the first quarter of 2023, and their best-selling EV, the Bolt, is going to end production soon.

I’m not the only one asking this question. Reuters had industry research firm AutoForecast Solutions (AFS) put together an analysis and, yeah, it’s not great.

GM’s Ultium Cells joint venture with Korea’s LG Energy Solution (373220.KS) has opened its first plant in Warren, Ohio, with a second plant in Spring Hill, Tennessee, slated to begin production in early 2024 and a third in Lansing, Michigan, to open in early 2025.

Virtually all of GM’s newest EVs in North America are designed to use Ultium battery packs developed jointly with LGES and produced at one of the three U.S. plants.

Those three facilities will have a combined annual capacity of at least 135 gigawatt-hours (GWh), according to GM — enough to supply at least 1.35 million EVs a year.

But with the staggered startup schedules and slow ramp, AFS forecasts the three battery plants will be able to produce just 58 GWh worth of cells, or enough to supply about 550,000 vehicles.

While I’m not an expert, it does seem like 58 is a much smaller number than 135. GM, for its part, disagrees and thinks it’ll be able to do it. If demand for electric cars isn’t as robust as automakers think, this shouldn’t be an issue, but if Ford and Tesla can crank out all the cars they’re planning to build and the demand is there, it could be a bad mid-decade for GM.

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About 50% of Non-EV Owners Want An Electrified Vehicle Next

2024 Chevrolet Equinox Ev 3rs 130

Speaking of demand, auto consultancy/accounting firm KPMG is out with a study of new car buyers and it seems like owners of diesel or gasoline cars are starting to think about getting one of dem fancy electric cars.

Automotive News got ahold of the study and has the details:

The majority of consumers willing to consider those vehicles expect to purchase one within the next two years, according to the survey released Monday. KPMG surveyed 1,003 people in the U.S. on April 21-26. For most consumers considering the switch to electric or hybrid vehicles, gas prices and environmental concerns are the top motivators.

Cool. Everyone is pumped for EVs, then, and have no concerns or hangups?

But affordability remains an obstacle for many potential EV buyers, said Gary Silberg, KPMG global automotive sector leader. Silberg said he expects demand for EVs to continue to grow but sees affordability as an important caveat to industry optimism. “A lot of people are excited about the opportunity, but I don’t know how many people can afford it,” Silberg said.

On the survey, households with incomes of at least $100,000 were much more likely to report already owning an alternative fuel vehicle than households with lower incomes and were more likely to be considering an alternative fuel vehicle if they did not already own one. Consumers in lower income brackets are the least likely to be considering a hybrid or EV, despite being the most likely to be concerned about rising gasoline prices.

That’s real. Electric cars are, currently, not cheap, even with the federal tax credit. The most affordable one, the Chevy Bolt, is also going out of production (as mentioned earlier).

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Let’s Tie It All Together Now

Ford Mustang Mach E Premium Cropped

So, we think that Ford’s current production plans are maybe on track. We know that Ford has secured a ton (literally, hundreds of thousands of tons) of potential battery minerals. We know Australia is trying to open up the lithium taps. We think that GM might have a hard time meeting its own lofty production goals. We think that there’s going to be more demand for electric and hybrid vehicles going forward.

I don’t want to undervalue the importance of having great product and I like what GM is doing with the Equinox and Blazer. While Ford beat GM to market with an EV pickup and with an affordable-ish EV crossover, Ford’s Q1 2023 EV market share was 4.2%, compared to 7.6% for Chevy. The Bolt is great and if Chevy can successfully build and deliver Equinoxes to replace them then I think GM has a good chance of keeping the #2 spot in 2025 and 2026.

If Ford manages to beat GM in production, however, that’ll allow Ford to potentially keep prices lower and grab excited costumers who are less loyal to a brand than the average Texan. It’ll be fun to watch.

Estimate Market Share In Q4 2026

Here’s your chance, tell me the market shares of GM, Ford, and Tesla in Q4 2026. Here’s a guess:

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  • Tesla – 34%
  • Ford – 21%
  • GM – 18%
  • Everyone Else – 27%

Your turn.

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Mr Sarcastic
Mr Sarcastic
1 year ago

Right now i vote for whoever designs an EV that i can use to run over my neighbors friggin non stop barking dog. They can’t hear it because 5 kids under 3 Nice couple but not even 30.

Mr Sarcastic
Mr Sarcastic
1 year ago

you cant trust any study that doesnt reveal methodology. Who did they ask? Where did they ask? What did they ask? How did they ask it? Hey California teen if you were looking to buy a vehicle would you consider an EV? Or mr oregon next time you buy a car would you consider an EV if they solved the bursting into flames, you vould get the make and model you want and it was competively priced with other vehicles and charging was not a problem?

Stef Schrader
Stef Schrader
1 year ago

parsh: 100% of my heart

Zeppelopod
Zeppelopod
1 year ago
Reply to  Stef Schrader

Unlike batteries, it is a good thing to use 100% of your heart’s capacity for the things you love.

Chronometric
Chronometric
1 year ago

GM and Ford don’t sell very many EVs today — on purpose. Right now they are money-losers so they are limiting production. They get to roll out new EV models that get attention and investor cred to help the stock price. Limiting production keeps demand and pricing high while letting them get experience with design and manufacturing. Both managements understand they must get way way way more efficient at building EVs if they are going to sell to mainstream America while keeping their margins up.

Last edited 1 year ago by Chronometric
Dinklesmith
Dinklesmith
1 year ago
Reply to  Chronometric

Losing money on the product is a result of not producing enough. They take losses for each product because you have to pay for the factory with it. If you sell 100,000 then the cost per car for the factory and workers etc is far smaller than if you only produce 10,000
So people saying they limit production because of losing money isnt correct

EmotionalSupportBMW
EmotionalSupportBMW
1 year ago

I’ve consulted my crystal ball and the winner will be: whoever convinces my mom to buy an electric car first. She is the definition of average Midwestern buyer. She couldn’t tell you the model or how many cylinders her car has. And every couple of years she finds a small rust spot and proceeds to trade that car in over concern mechanical failure awaits. GM continues to lust after the sweet halo car market, they’ve thrown numerous Cadillac V’s into the ring already. All very good, to great efforts. That don’t seem to translate into gold plating the Ren Center. Celestiq celestial destiny is likely straight to the hall of very good/ limited sales. Ford on the other hand forgot this country did a backflip over a shark about six years ago. They could make the dopest Electric Mustang and F-150 to ever leave Dearborn. And Dale, the 60 year old contractor from Altoona is too busy posting memes about Ram owners enjoying the embrace of other men, to go down to his local Ford dealer. Neither party seems all to interested in selling just her a suv sized screen that drives around that she periodically has to plug in. If GM can make the Equinox A.) Not start on fire B.) Available on lots C.) sub 50k out the door. That has my mom all over it. She has mentioned how she thinks the E-Stang looks cool. But she hates the horse. So, if Ford A.) Changes the name to Escape-E or something dumb like that. B.) makes it start on fire less. She would probably already own one. So tldr; My mom is probably going to buy a Kia, cause FoMoCo and GM would rather shot themselves directly in the foot, then make money.

Mrbrown89
Mrbrown89
1 year ago

GM could have a bigger market share years ago if they continued with the Voltec platform for more models. Equinox with 40 electric miles? Blazer? Traverse? All of those customers will be already familiar with electrification and eventually buy an EV when they are ready to move forward, and stay with the brand mostly. After buying a Volt and a Bolt, GM discontinued both. They can still do it today with their legacy models (Silverado/Tahoe and equivalents) but that’s why there is a section called GM Hit or Miss here lol

Autojunkie
Autojunkie
1 year ago

I checked in with my future self and here’s what I was told:

  • GM – 23%
  • Ford – 21%
  • Stellantis – 19%
  • Tesla – 11%
  • Everyone Else – 26%

Tesla will continue to lose market share against the established brands as consumers are finally able to choose a functional EV with better build quality, not designed after a bar of Irish Spring, and are still bitter after Musk’s unsuccessful coup of the US government, with his new humanoid robots, back in 2025. I was also told that he purchased North Korea for his evil lair in 2027 after being on the run for two years and he remains there building it as a haven for Q-anoners and devout Libertarians seeking asylum.

Don’t shoot the messenger. This is just what I was told.

Chris with bad opinions
Chris with bad opinions
1 year ago
Reply to  Autojunkie

I would like to subscribe to your future self’s newsletter.

Mr Sarcastic
Mr Sarcastic
1 year ago
Reply to  Autojunkie

I looked this checks out.

Bongo Friendee Harvey Park
Bongo Friendee Harvey Park
1 year ago
Reply to  Autojunkie

Rumor has it he escaped the US and got into North Korea inside a molded SKB marimba case, as is customary in the auto industry.

Zeppelopod
Zeppelopod
1 year ago
Reply to  Autojunkie

The cult of personality around the Kim Jongs claims that they can control the weather.

I guess we’ll know if Elon owns the place when the skies are suddenly filled with dick-shaped clouds and Rick and Morty references.

Toecutter
Toecutter
1 year ago

The time is ripe for an affordable, sub-$20,000, 200+ mile range, simple/reliable/repairable EV. If Tesla puts such a thing out, I think they will maintain and/or possibly reclaim their marketshare if there is no close competition. The 50% of the buying population that is considering buying a new EV instead of an ICE is currently priced out of the EV market, and until such a thing becomes available, they will stay priced out of the market.

Such a thing would by necessity be built with a small battery pack comparable in capacity to that found in the Nissan Leaf or BMW i3, but with a focus in the car’s design on both aerodynamic efficiency and weight reduction in order to get 1.5-2x the highway range of these aforementioned vehicles.

If it is seen as a “penalty box”, then giving it massive acceleration performance is a relatively inexpensive way to add value, and any manufacturer who doesn’t care that it will be faster/more powerful than greatly more expensive products in their lineup has an opportunity to create a new market niche for light/efficient EVs which there could be plenty of eager buyers that would otherwise be considering an ICE “fun” car.

The Bonnie Situation
The Bonnie Situation
1 year ago
Reply to  Toecutter

Almost no ICE cars start under $20,000 anymore. I am ignoring anything that starts at $19,500. You have three options. That’s it. EVs are not going to be sub $20k is because nothing is.
Nissan Versa: $15,730
Mitsubishi Mirage: $16,245
Hyundai Accent / Kia Rio: $16,645

Bork Bork
Bork Bork
1 year ago

They’ll be plenty of sub $20k EVs but they’ll be Chinese so not sold in the US, like this one.
Baojun Yep electric SUV from GM, SAIC and Wuling to start from 11,885 USD in China (carnewschina.com)

James Kohler
James Kohler
1 year ago
Reply to  Toecutter

I agree with “the_bonnie_situation” that it will probably have to be at least $35,000 for any auto maker to even consider putting into production outside of the Chinese companies. Can they do it for less? No doubt. Will they is another story….

Toecutter
Toecutter
1 year ago
Reply to  James Kohler

If they don’t do something of the sort, they’re going to eventually get beaten by the Chinese when the Chinese figure out how to bring such a car over to the U.S. Should that come to pass, there absolutely should be NO BAILOUTS.

James Kohler
James Kohler
1 year ago
Reply to  Toecutter

Unfortunately I don’t know which of the two scenarios is more unlikely. The OEMs offering a sub $35K EV or our govt actually sticking to their guns and refusing to bail the morons out for not offering it.

Toecutter
Toecutter
1 year ago
Reply to  James Kohler

I don’t think a sub $35k EV by the major automakers is likely, nor do I think a no bailouts situation is also likely. But the fact is, the status quo is not working out and it must be consigned to the dustbin of history, or there will be even worse consequences than what we have to live with today.

Dinklesmith
Dinklesmith
1 year ago
Reply to  Toecutter

The Equinox EV is coming out this year and starts at $30k

Toecutter
Toecutter
1 year ago
Reply to  Dinklesmith

We’ll see. I suspect it will be like the mythical $20,000 Ford Maverick Hybrids. Available in theory, but not in practice, as they upsell you on a greatly more expensive set of options with no way to opt out other than to completely go without.

Nsane In The MembraNe
Nsane In The MembraNe
1 year ago

Ford is going to need to deal with their massive quality control issues if they want to compete with GM. While GM hardly has a sterling track record on that front, Ford’s pattern of over promising and under delivering as well as the recall palooza over the last couple of years have resulted in a lot of bad press and very angry customers. Don’t get me wrong…there’s a chance the new GM EVs spontaneously combust or something and even things out on that front because it’s an American car manufacturer tradition to try to out suck each other, but right now GM has the upper hand.

Ford would also need to offer lower priced options in this segment. While I think the new Silverado EV is shamefully, ludicrously overpriced, the new electric Equinox is going to undercut the Mach E significantly…not to mention the expensive car bubble is going to burst eventually. 90% of the population can’t afford to drop $60,000+ on eclectic trucks and the like…and the Ford/GM/Stellantis model of “we’ll finance anyone with a pulse over however many months will make the payment doable” is not sustainable.

That bubble is going to pop and the results will be catastrophic. To wrap everything up…these companies will either find a way to make affordable EVs (and vehicles in general) or they’re going to run into massive problems. The majority of the country either can’t afford these vehicles and giving them a way to with predatory financing is going to lead to massive ways of repossessions…not to mention current EVs are disposable commodities to begin with.

What’s going to happen when John Doe who makes 60k a year defaults on his 10 years/11% APR loan for an $80,000 F150 Lightning after 2 years of only paying off interest and the car is currently worth 40 because of how quickly it was surpassed by competitors? It’s not going to be pretty. My stance is no bailouts this time. Here are the consequences of your greed. Deal with them.

Last edited 1 year ago by Nsane In The MembraNe
Michael Beranek
Michael Beranek
1 year ago

What’s “Tesla”? I’ve never seen any such company advertised. Does it really exist?

Bork Bork
Bork Bork
1 year ago

Musk said Tesla is going to start advertising now that demand is going down and he owns a failing ad company.

rctothefuture
rctothefuture
1 year ago

If GM makes halo’s and works its way down, they have the potential for more profits and more desirability than Ford at the moment. I know a few folks who would want the Mach-E, if wasn’t called a Mustang. I think Ford’s Lightning has gotten a lot of bad press and with GM promising big numbers, they have the potential to really stake a claim in the EV market.

Or they’ll bungle this whole thing and play years of catchup.

Mr Sarcastic
Mr Sarcastic
1 year ago
Reply to  rctothefuture

Is it Catchup or Ketsup?

MDMK
MDMK
1 year ago

The first non-Tesla automaker wishing to go mass market with their electrified vehicles who A) secures ample raw material supplies to produce a full range of vehicles regardless of price point and B) stops playing their profit padding limited production quantity games to force consumers to wait months or longer to take delivery at or above MSRP, will win the market share battle.

I give Ford the advantage unless Toyota with its loyal and patient customer base comes out of nowhere and passes both Ford and GM on the last furlough.

Uninformed Fucknugget
Uninformed Fucknugget
1 year ago

Because I’m trying to get a little less uninformed, are there any unbiased easy to use tools online to help figure cost analysis between ev and gas vehicles for specific use cases?

I have read articles with generalized data but everyone uses vehicles differently. In my specific case, I need to be able to have real world 200 mi range in Michigan year round. I need to be able to tow 4,000lbs of boat, trailer, and gear 16 miles round trip 30+ times a summer and heavier stuff like compact tractor or whatever pile of rusty crap I decide my next unfinished project will be. My current daily is a late model fleet spec Malibu (yes, it is boring as hell) and a 99 3/4 suburban for tow duty.

I’d like to be able to learn if lower operating costs of an ev pickup or suv would be enough to offset the high purchase price and if so how long would it take for that to happen.

Brian Ash
Brian Ash
1 year ago

Most projections and calculators use average gas price, electricity cost, maintenance, etc, don’t believe any of them. Which rarely applies to even 1/2 of use cases. You need to understand actual costs for your situation, local gas price, local electricity cost, DIY ICE persons maintenance far lower than average, etc. Back when Tesla’s had free charging it made some sense, but people still ignored the $25k+ premium which is difficult to recoup. I have even seen some calcs use for example 30 cents for kWh of a location, which did not include the delivery charge utilities add which is up to additional 20 cents per kWh. Electricity rates are the big factor and they range from 10c to 100c per kWh around the country.

Jonathan Myers
Jonathan Myers
1 year ago
Reply to  Brian Ash

$.30 per kWh is extremely rare. It is about $.12 where I live with all the fees. You can get even cheaper if you subscribe to an off-peak usage plan. https://www.eia.gov/electricity/state/

Thevenin
Thevenin
1 year ago

The EPA’s calculator is very useful, if basic. It can include leasing cost though, which is neat.
https://fueleconomy.gov/feg/savemoney.jsp

The AFDC has a similar calculator that’s a little more in-depth and includes typical maintenance costs.
https://afdc.energy.gov/calc/

Neither of these calculators assumes average electricity or gas prices or driving habits. You’ll need to punch those in yourself.

Dinklesmith
Dinklesmith
1 year ago

I’m not sure any current EVs fit the bill. Look for ones that use heat pumps since you have hard winters, so the F150 lightning is a no go. The Silverado EV will have a heat pump so, with the big battery and if you can preheat, 200 miles shouldn’t be a problem in winter. It’ll handle a 30 mile boat trip no problem.
The only problem will be that it’ll be expensive as all hell and unobtainable for awhile

Space
Space
1 year ago

Using the calculator Thevenin posted and using the Ford F150 vs the Ford F150 Lightning for fairness I got a breakeven at ~7 years.

Lokki
Lokki
1 year ago

About 50% of Non-EV Owners Want An Electrified Vehicle Next…”
“Want” and “will actually buy” are different things.

An EV would work fine for my wife but frankly, I can’t even imagine her getting out the charging and plugging the car in every night especially if it’s rainy or snowy and the car is all wet albeit in the garage. In an apartment complex with outdoor parking? Ain’t goona do it. I also think that the whole “never miss a chance to take a piss to charge up the car” is going to be too much hassle for a lot of customers.
I also tend to believe that free charging at stores and Starbucks, and at the office et al is going to become a thing of the past when real electric car popularity kicks in. One or two cars only make a negligible bump in the power bill but when everybody is doing it, some accountant is going to notice.

Just my opinion, and I’m usually wrong.

Last edited 1 year ago by Lokki
MDMK
MDMK
1 year ago
Reply to  Lokki

The EV owners rebuttal against the short period of time spent fueling ICE is EV owners only spend seconds plugging in which is true. But not only does that apply only at home, but on a daily basis and depending on driving habits, EV owners may spend as much of not more time going through the motions of refueling than ICE owners. Considering how smartphone and laptop computer owners constantly plug in even when they don’t need do, its reasonable people will treat their cars the same way which has the potential of becoming an annoyance for many non EV enthusiast car owners.

Cyko9
Cyko9
1 year ago
Reply to  Lokki

I keep thinking, the oil & gas companies (aka “Big Energy”) seem slow to capitalize on the growing electricity trend. Once they figure out how to make money off this, they’ll strangle every charger available. Providers will probably get hit hard & be forced to pass the cost on to consumers.

Vetatur Fumare
Vetatur Fumare
1 year ago
Reply to  Lokki

While my wife sucks at car maintenance (and I generally fill it up for her every time I drive her car), she is a thousand times better than I am at keeping her phone charged. Maybe it will be the same with an electric car.

Detroit-Lightning
Detroit-Lightning
1 year ago

I’m not sure what to make with these two.

Ford beats GM to market with the lightning, offers really good pricing for it, then by the time anyone with a “reservation” after the first day it was announced can order, the price has been jacked up $20k. Oh, and their new launches are a quality mess.

GM on the other hand can’t actually seem to build anything, and half of their offerings (including today’s embarrassing escalade ev – great, another 10,000lb monstrosity) are overpriced, oversized halo vehicles. Yet, they seemingly have a more robust pipeline in the works.

And none of the OEM’s are interested in developing a PHEV truck or van (sorry stellantis, I don’t consider buying your vehicles…)

Andrew Wyman
Andrew Wyman
1 year ago

I just want more PHEV’s. That’s my only comment for today. I would be very happy with a mixture of 40% PHEV’s and 60% BEV’s.

Nsane In The MembraNe
Nsane In The MembraNe
1 year ago
Reply to  Andrew Wyman

PHEVs reduce emissions dramatically and can work for pretty much the entire population right now while using a minuscule amount of battery resources compared to BEVs. I forget what Toyota’s rebuttal is but it’s something along the lines of they can make 10 PHEVs per one BEV. Why are we forcing people into massive, heavy, expensive, disposable BEV appliances that are essentially still in beta testing over focusing on this?

It makes no sense to me. I’d consider myself pro EV in the grand scheme of things but we have a compromise that works RIGHT NOW and will make a huge positive impact. Why are governments ignoring it to go after the full EV carrot time and time again? It’s also technology that hasn’t reached its full potential yet but it’s already appealing. Look at the current Volvo S60 recharge for example.

That things got over 500 horsepower, something like 40 miles of electric range, and it gets better fuel economy than its ICE counterparts when driven like a normal hybrid…all for around the price of all the hot EVs, if not less. Why aren’t we talking about it more?

Strangek
Strangek
1 year ago

That S60 recharge is awesome! I love a hot sedan and that thing totally does it for me, it’s just out of reach financially though…seems like most things on the market are these days.

Nsane In The MembraNe
Nsane In The MembraNe
1 year ago
Reply to  Strangek

I won’t be in the market for myself again for a long time, but if I was in the market today in my current financial situation it would be one of the first things on my list. I’m also a hot sedan lover and fast, practical cars are what the wife is down with me having. My only concern with it would be lack of engagement…having gone from a GTI to a Kona N I’m used to a pretty engaging/fun to drive daily and other than the shocking acceleration the S60 doesn’t offer much in the way of feel and feedback…at least if the Savagegeese crew is to be believed, and they’re near the top of my “auto journos I trust” list.

But regardless, it would be worth a test drive. But would I pick it over an IS500, CT4V BW, S4/5, or M340i? Who knows. I’d need to drive them all to figure out if what I’d be giving up engagement wise would be worth the efficiency gains. I’m hoping that more sporty PHEVs and hybrids keep popping up because I find them mighty appealing.

Strangek
Strangek
1 year ago

I went from hot hatch (GTI) to large-ish sedan a couple of years ago. Big fast sedans can be quite engaging as well, they’re just good at different things. They don’t fly around corners quite as well, but they can haul some ass in quiet comfort which is what I need at the moment.

EXL500
EXL500
1 year ago

I just read an article somewhere that said the BMW 330e PHEV was the best of all worlds. Maybe C&D? Sorry, can’t locate the article.

James Kohler
James Kohler
1 year ago

Major OEMs are revealing and launching pure BEVs and skipping PHEVs in the coming years, which seems unwise for the North America market, but maybe they know something I don’t.

Thevenin
Thevenin
1 year ago

As y’all might know by now, I daily a Clarity PHEV. I’m very fond of my plug-in hybrids, because engineers love optimization problems, but I also get why they haven’t really caught on.

A good PHEV is the best of both worlds, but a bad PHEV is the worst of both worlds. A PHEV has two entire drivetrains which have to be integrated together, play to each other’s strengths, and then be minimized and crammed into a single car. To say the least, PHEV engineering costs can easily spiral out of control, and that makes automakers cautious to launch them.

On a marketing level, most customers seem to have trouble understanding the function or purpose of a PHEV. The nerdiness that makes PHEVs good also makes them comparatively unapproachable. And as battery costs drop, the dollar argument makes a little less sense every year. A Polestar 2 is already thousands cheaper than a Volvo S60.

On a gut level, even a PHEV on its best behavior feels like an EV with training wheels on. It’s an engineered approach of “good enough,” so it will always feel like a substitute for something better, something more aspirational.

I love PHEVs the way I love the 1941 M3 Lee/Grant — a stopgap solution that arrived just in time to make a difference and hold the line until manufacturing could scale up and meet the demand for something better. A loveavly quirky and exceptionally clever dead end.

Zeppelopod
Zeppelopod
1 year ago
Reply to  Thevenin

I feel the same way about my Volt. It’s a really clever idea, especially when you consider the fact that they were developing it back in like, 2008-2009ish. Post bailout timeline.

I don’t personally feel like mine is a “substitute for something better / more aspirational” but perhaps that’s because the first-generation Volt feels “special” to me. It’s all the dumb silly touches like capacitive buttons, the goofy Tron style interior, stuff like that. The capacitive buttons are fundamentally worse than proper buttons in every way except that they make me smile. The whole thing feels like it was designed by that guy from Futurama yelling “Welcome to the car of tomorrowwwww!

It’s kinda like EPCOT, or Tomorrowland, in a way. Increasingly dated but somehow more charming in its optimistic portrayal of an alternate technological future.

Wuffles Cookie
Wuffles Cookie
1 year ago
Reply to  Andrew Wyman

Yes please. I only need 40-ish miles of electric range for my daily commute, but when I road trip (which will be almost every weekend this summer) I’m going to need more than 500 miles between charges. Not a whole lot on the market that fits the bill, and no pure EV will do.

Turbeaux
Turbeaux
1 year ago
Reply to  Wuffles Cookie

I’m in the exact same boat. The answer is going to have to be 2 cars, but which one do you make the nice one? Great daily and economy road tripper or the other way around?

Brian Ash
Brian Ash
1 year ago

Highly unlikely for GM & Ford to be such big players in almost 3yrs from now, on paper their plans look promising, but eventually they will fall apart as usual. There’s only so many $100k EV truck buyers out there.

Tesla 30%, Kia/Hyundai/Genesis 16%, Ford 12%, GM 12%, Everyone Else 30%

Last edited 1 year ago by Brian Ash
Pupmeow
Pupmeow
1 year ago
Reply to  Brian Ash

I agree. Kia and Friends are the companies I’m watching. These are the companies making (relatively) affordable hybrids, PHEVs, and EVs.

Root
Root
1 year ago
Reply to  Brian Ash

I thought the Koreans were in trouble because they won’t qualify for the IRA tax credits (without a lease work-around). Or are we betting that’ll get resolved?

Hoonicus
Hoonicus
1 year ago

The charging network roll out has been by all accounts craptastic. Many can’t charge at home. The only way I would consider one would be a restomod with nothing unnecessary. Distracting touchscreen B.S. should be banned.

10001010
10001010
1 year ago

GMC has delivered all of two Hummers so far through the first quarter of 2023

One of them must have been sold here in Houston because I saw one rolling down Memorial Dr last week.

Last edited 1 year ago by 10001010
Cheats McCheats
Cheats McCheats
1 year ago
Reply to  Matt Hardigree

Interesting, I wonder if they were sold in a previous quarter, back in early march I saw 3 on a carrier parked on the side of the road.

Lokki
Lokki
1 year ago
Reply to  10001010

What makes you assume it was actually sold to a customer? Seeing it on the highway doesn’t equal sold. A dealer is likely to keep one for test drives and have customers make orders for their particular car from the factory.

10001010
10001010
1 year ago
Reply to  Lokki

I assumed it to be a privately owned vehicle because that neighborhood is absolutely crawling in $100K+ vehicles.

Fuzzyweis
Fuzzyweis
1 year ago

I’d say Tesla 50% still, they are the iphone of EVs and it’s still early
Ford 15% if they can crank out the F150 lightnings enough
GM 10%, if they can crank out the Silverados enough
Kia/Hyundai 10%, if they can crank out the Ioniqs enough
Polestar/Volvo/VW/Rivian etc the other 25%.

If you go to EV car meetings that seems to be about the split, for every 5 Tesla’s you’ll see 1 or 2 Bolts, a Mach-E, a Lightning, a couple Rivians, a Polestar, a Hyundai, a Kia. GM has the Bolt going away, and they’ve been super slow to crank out the Lyriq so no reason to see they’ll go faster with the Silverado/Blazer/Equinox.

Dogisbadob
Dogisbadob
1 year ago

Ford can beat GM if they bring over that cool green van 😉

Jack Trade
Jack Trade
1 year ago
Reply to  Dogisbadob

Agree. As a lot of people pointed out last week, it’s basically a reworked version of the Honda Element/Kia Soul, which people liked/like for the combination of space, everyday usability, and the promise of a little fun and distinctiveness.

Jim Farley talked a lot of Ford’s pursuit of “white space” in upcoming vehicle designs, the stuff others aren’t making but customers want. This sure seems to fit.

Toecutter
Toecutter
1 year ago
Reply to  Jack Trade

Ford created a massive amount of unfilled “white space” in its lineup by killing off all the cars in its US lineup except for the Mustang.

If it made the EV equivalent to a Mitsubishi Mirage that got 200 miles range per charge, was rear drive, used a small battery and advanced streamlining techniques to keep mass down to Miata-like levels, and could out-accelerate a Mustang Cobra for a price tag of under $20k, they might have a real winner on their hands.

Vetatur Fumare
Vetatur Fumare
1 year ago
Reply to  Toecutter

Them’s some pretty steep wants.

Toecutter
Toecutter
1 year ago
Reply to  Vetatur Fumare

When you consider what the technology is capable of these days, all of this is very much doable. How much will planned obsolescence and an emphasis on constantly selling upmarket both be given up in order for it to happen? If the Chinese end up taking over, the U.S. manufacturers will only have themselves to blame.

In the 1990s, GM was ahead of the curve by more than 2 decades. They have since lost that lead.

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