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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
EDIT NOTE:The title and content of the LA Time article has changed since I posted this morning - they original article stipulated that electrified vehicle sales were flat year-over-year. After many complained to the author, he revised it this afternoon to now state that hybrid sales are the problem but EV (BEV and PHEV) sales are up.

http://www.latimes.com/business/autos/la-fi-hy-electric-vehicle-sales-20140903-story.html

Article reports that EV (and I think they are including PHEV) sales are flat year-over-year and don't have indicators of improving before the end of 2014.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
First of all, I'm an EV fan - I want them to do well. I had a Volt and now have an PHEV Fusion Energi.

That being said: The Edumunds.com study they apparently are quoting from (which I can't find - plz post a link if anyone does), simply states:
Sales of electric drive vehicles are stuck at about 3.6% of all new car sales for 2014, Edmunds senior analyst Jessica Caldwell said.

That's below the 3.7% market share for 2013, and it's not likely to grow any before the end of the year.

And that's during an otherwise robust sales season. Total figures for August were higher than any time in the last decade.
If those figures are true, then EV sales are indeed flat and I'm afraid that their stipulation of gasoline prices staying down (relatively) is driving that trend sounds plausible.

Now, I don't want gas prices to be higher to drive EV sales, but I sure wish Chevy, Ford, Tesla, etc... were able to drive down battery costs faster than they have been.
 

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Hard to say what Edmunds is including in the numbers. If you count vehicles with a plug then (a) sales are NOT 3.7% of the market (less than 1%) and (b) they are hardly flat. My guess is the numbers include hybrids without plugs, which, as we all know, don't count. LOL
 
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First of all, I'm an EV fan - I want them to do well. I had a Volt and now have an PHEV Fusion Energi.

That being said: The Edumunds.com study they apparently are quoting from (which I can't find - plz post a link if anyone does), simply states:

If those figures are true, then EV sales are indeed flat and I'm afraid that their stipulation of gasoline prices staying down (relatively) is driving that trend sounds plausible.

Now, I don't want gas prices to be higher to drive EV sales, but I sure wish Chevy, Ford, Tesla, etc... were able to drive down battery costs faster than they have been.
The second gen Volt with a more aggressive sales campaign might bump sales, as would a $29k Volt and the upcoming 200 mile range Bolt.

Would you prefer two 700 HP Dodge Challengers or the one GT-R?
 

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The Edmunds article he is referencing refers to both hybrids and any type of plugin vehicles. It points out that as a group the hybrids and plugins have not gained market share this year. However, if you look inside those numbers then you will find that plugin sales are growing year over year and non-plugin hybrid sales have fallen. We may be seeing Prius owners starting to turn to plugins instead of buying or leasing another Prius.
 

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Which may mean that plug-in sales are canabalizing hybrid sales. It is entirely possible that 3 to 4% is a market saturation point for these cars since they don't have all capabilities in all segments. Iow, there is no way to tow a trailer and haul 6 crew in an EV.

A lot of these vehicles are gen1. I think it's way too early to declare flat sales based on a few years data.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Which may mean that plug-in sales are canabalizing hybrid sales. It is entirely possible that 3 to 4% is a market saturation point for these cars since they don't have all capabilities in all segments. Iow, there is no way to tow a trailer and haul 6 crew in an EV.

A lot of these vehicles are gen1. I think it's way too early to declare flat sales based on a few years data.
Excellent points. I find it amazing that GM is teasing the 2016 Volt as just 1 new car, they need more Voltec models now or they stand to loose more customers (like me). 6 passengers and towing a niches - something bigger than a compact is what a lot in the mainstream want.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
The second gen Volt with a more aggressive sales campaign might bump sales, as would a $29k Volt and the upcoming 200 mile range Bolt.

Would you prefer two 700 HP Dodge Challengers or the one GT-R?
  1. I sure hope they don't call that car (if it exists) the "Bolt"
  2. I fear GM will advertise the new Volt just as badly as they did the current one and dealers outside of "compliance regions" will do as bad a job, or worse, at selling it
  3. I'll take a 2015 GT-R Nismo edition over just about anything: 0-60 in 2.0 and 4 seats!
 

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As long as plug-ins sales are constant (or "flat" as naysayers call it), the electrification of private transportation will continue to grow. As I see it, every manufacturer has at least one vehicle using an electric motor and a larger battery as part of its power source, either in a hybrid or in a full EV, so there is progress, although only a few has gone the full BEV route.

Volt owners have taken that leap into the EV market. Other have taken a different step (as in a Fusion Energi), but we as a nation are technically ready for a full acceptance since everyone who has a smartphone or a mobile computer knows how to recharge at night. I have no EV but I have my Level 2 EVSE ready!
 

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Tesla stock has been hitting all time highs w/ analysts predicting it will go to $300... what does the stock market know that the LA Times does not?
Tesla's got a great future, but there was an interesting discussion from an analyst (who upgraded the stock) a couple of days ago saying that actual projected earnings don't matter at this point. TSLA's got sentiment and momentum. They're closing in on Nissan in terms of market cap.

Expect TSLA to rise today on news of Gigafactory construction, even though Gigafactory construction is not really news.:)
 

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As to the LA Times article, others have pointed out many valid points above.

In simple terms, US plug-in sales are up 33% YTD. So no, they're aren't flat with no indication of improving.
 

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Would you prefer two 700 HP Dodge Challengers or the one GT-R?
None of those! I would prefer a Tesla Motors Model S. I sat in one and operated the screens, so I know what I really prefer to drive.
 

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Excellent points. I find it amazing that GM is teasing the 2016 Volt as just 1 new car, they need more Voltec models now or they stand to loose more customers (like me). 6 passengers and towing a niches - something bigger than a compact is what a lot in the mainstream want.
Is it really so amazing that a company, essentially sworn to shareholder return, would not promote less profitable vehicles? I am not saying anything about losing money, here. They learned the hard way that there is such a thing as seeking too much market share, too quickly. They'll probably loose me, too, in favor of "owning" their shareholders. The choice is theirs. You, me and a few others don't necessarily matter in Barra and De Nysschen's world.

It is a tangent on this thread, but the shareholder cultures of Tesla and GM are perhaps more different than the car owners. GM's would never suffer the consequence of a head-long push into electric mobility. Neither would any of the others. How else do you think Stifel could come out with a $400 price target, on TSLA, in a report this week based on earnings of $8 a share? That is paying $400, to earn $8 (in 2017), when history tells us a fair price for a car company earning this type of figure would be around $120 (15 p/e), and that is for earnings next year. This may be greek, to some, but it tells us something about what Tesla investors are willing to tolerate, in support of a different mission. There may be bumps in the road ahead, but I think it is magnificent how much investment philosophy is revisiting "corporate mission".
 

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A big (huge) market has yet to be tapped: trucks. Pickup truck sales dominate sales of any other type of vehicle. Out of 35 vehicles GM currently offers, the Silverado outsold the next highest selling model (Cruze) by over 200% last month. More Silverados sold last month (49k) than Volts have sold in the last 2 YEARS.
 

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I'm not sure I want to be in GM's shoes right now. I have read (citation needed I know) that GM still looses money on every volt. So how hard would you market it until it is profitable? The catch 22 is that it won't be profitable until you 1) sell more and/or 2) make it much cheaper. Bob Lutz discussed this in an interview I saw a few years ago. Putting two complete power plants (Gas and Electric) in a car is expensive. He felt the Volt was a "bridge" to a better pure EV or less expensive hybrid type. Between that and 100 years of inertia, it will be very hard for GM to compete with a start up lead by someone like Elon Musk. That said, the Volt showed that they can, but can they continue? I hope so. I love my Volt. But if Tesla comes out with a 300 mile all electric that can recharge in less than 1/2 hour and that a Middle class family can afford.... I all in. I'm also not holding my breath.
 

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It is a tangent on this thread, but the shareholder cultures of Tesla and GM are perhaps more different than the car owners. GM's would never suffer the consequence of a head-long push into electric mobility. Neither would any of the others. How else do you think Stifel could come out with a $400 price target, on TSLA, in a report this week based on earnings of $8 a share? That is paying $400, to earn $8 (in 2017), when history tells us a fair price for a car company earning this type of figure would be around $120 (15 p/e), and that is for earnings next year. This may be greek, to some, but it tells us something about what Tesla investors are willing to tolerate, in support of a different mission. There may be bumps in the road ahead, but I think it is magnificent how much investment philosophy is revisiting "corporate mission".
I don't buy into Tesla investors being in support of Tesla's "mission," unless you mean the mission of making money. It's a growth stock and currently subject to a lot of speculation, so that PE ratio isn't so far out of line.

It just interesting to me that the market seems to have Model X and Model 3 success priced in several times over. With each incremental piece of news about those it climbs further.






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