Tesla Killers or Tesla Kills Competition

There is a lot of confusion and misinformation when we look at electric vehicle competition.

There are many common mistakes or problems in reported EV data and analysis.

* there is the inclusion of plug in hybrid vehices with battery electric vehicle sales

Plug in hybrids (PHEV) have combustion engines. Norway has seen PHEV sales collapse as they make the full transition to electric vehicles. Norway is a country that now has 80-90% BEV sales. ICE (combustion engines) and PHEV have both collapsed in that most advanced EV market.

* China and other EV markets do not get broken out into clear price categories. This is especially problematic in China where only 20% of 2.9 BEV vehicles sold in 2021 were in the $38K+ price range. Tesla has 55% of the $38k+ BEV China market.

Looking at apples to apples price categories and vehicle segments shows Tesla maintaining 55-75% market share. In Europe Tesla only has about 25-30% market share for comparitive priced EVs. But Tesla is hampered by $15k for import duties and shipping costs. This handicap will go away with the Berlin factory fully ramped.

Cybertruck for US and an Refreshed Standard Range Model 3 is Key for Higher Sales in China/Europe

Cybertruck is key for Tesla to address 70%% of the US market which is dominated by large trucks and large SUVs. The Model Y does have a 7-seat version which does enable some competition for the 7-seat SUV market.

Tesla’s gigapresses and improved batteries will enable Tesla to extend its advantage for lower costs and efficiency and increase the number of cars they can sell in more price sensitive China and Europe. Constant improvement in Tesla vehicles could enable Tesla to get to Model 3 Standard range that is acceptable but $15-20k lower in cost than the current starter lowest cost versions in 2024-2025.

The old standard range cost $10,000 less and weighed 3550 pounds with a 50 kwh battery and 263 miles of range. Improved standard range $5000 less ($31k instead of $46k) weighing only 3300 pound instead of 3880 pound Model 3 and a 2024 higher efficiency 44 kwh battery and 260+ miles of range. Batteries with more advanced iron LFP (perhaps with magnesium for increased range and efficiency.

Tesla needs to improve the batteries and range of the MIC Model 3 standard range. It is heavier likely because of the iron LFP batteries. Tesla needs to remove 15% of the weight and batteries without losing range over the next two years.

18 thoughts on “Tesla Killers or Tesla Kills Competition”

  1. Here is what I don’t understand. If batteries add 20% to the price of EV’s, why are they about 60% more expensive?

    Supposedly, the drive train is cheaper and all else is equal.. So why is the EV so expensive? In Europe, you cannot get an EV below 50k USD, whereas a “normal” gas guzzler will cost perhaps 35k USD. And then we are not talking Teslas, which range from 70k USD and up.

    Is it just because the EV market is not mature? Is it a question of not having a profitable spare parts sale to compensate for low unit sales profit?

  2. You mostly need the long range when you are going on longer trips, right? And in those scenarios, you are mostly on the high way. And while driving on the high way, the energy consumption is dominated by air resistance, not energy need to accelerate/decelerate the car.

    So what are the ranges for EV’s when counting only high way driving? Is the range longer or shorter? Intuitively, the model X should be favored by such a test whereas the model Y would be loss so.

  3. But the battery is about 20% of an Electric car total price, looking at battery size vs performance as the only measure to evaluate an electric car is misleading. Assuming that other car makers are destined to wait in place while Tesla keeps progressing is downright wrong….

  4. What your view on EV adoption across emerging markets?

    Will they adopt later or the heavy adoption of EV in developed countries lead to collapse of Crude prices delaying the EV adoption?

    • I think EV adoption in emerging markets is with robotaxi EV and with lower priced China EV and later after 2026 lower priced Tesla or Tesla robotaxi. Could also have EV buses and shared EV

  5. Model Y 7 seat is a joke. Cost is exorbitant, space is inadequate.

    People who want more seats buy a model X or an ICE.

  6. Between having to deal with cold weather & occasional very long distance drives, I would go for a plug in hybrid car.
    Maybe all electric with batteries that can be swapped out for freshly charged batteries.

  7. So Brian, has Elon really made any progress in DECREASING the cost to the consumer of his cars? I keep waiting to see real progress like we have witnessed in televisions and other electronic consumer goods, but simply haven’t seen it yet. We all look forward to the day of an electric corolla type vehicle selling for 15k with a 500 mile range.

    • What was the price of a 2 second 0 to 60mph car before Tesla? Or of a luxury fully electric car with 400 mile range?

      TVs, phones etc. are not getting cheaper, they are getting better.

    • I’m not sure we’ll see Tesla go for a 15k car; Elon talked before about doing a 25k car, if memory serves, but he may have switched his vision for a Robotaxi future where you hire out transportation services rather than own a car.

      I guess we’ll see in a few years.

    • Corolla starts at $20,400. Not so sure why Toyota would sell one for $15k with a unicorn 500 mile battery.

    • That’s what I am thinking. Its a race between Tesla figuring out how to make reliable, well built cars versus everyone else figuring out how to make EV powertrains.

      I’m not happy with Tesla quality. I’m not happy with VW quality either just happen to think it is better than Tesla quality. I’m not happy that Acura/Honda is using GM EV powertrains and I’m not happy that Lexus/Toyota is taking their time. I’m not happy with Ford and GM because they are Ford and GM and we all know that they can’t build a reliable vehicle.

  8. Nothing short of competition or steep recession will have Tesla lowering their price $10k. They could already if market forced it. Until then capital for expansion is goal.

    • When Russia invaded Ukraine, Musk flew to Cananda to obtain nickel from the mines there. Everybody else may be out of luck. Although Volkswagen is planning on clear-cutting the Indonesian Rainforest to strip mine nickel laterites (one of the most CO2 intensive smelting operations around). Then, VW can replace their fleet of very efficient diesel autos with not very Green EV’s.

    • A steep recession is the #1 impediment to electrification. People won’t spend $43k on a new EV to save $2k on gas per year. If anything people will push off new car purchases that aren’t necessary.

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