Automobiles have evolved immensely over the past decade. With an increasing number of people being more concerned about their carbon footprint, it should come as no surprise that electric cars are becoming a more popular choice for everyday transportation. Apart from the convenience of charging vehicles at home, and the occasional preferred parking space for green vehicles, the cost savings from refuelling tanks make for a convincing selling point.
Nowadays, when you think of “electric cars”, Tesla remains top-of-mind. Even as a relatively new company, Tesla has made incredible strides to become the world’s most valuable automaker since its launch. The company’s CEO, Elon Musk, has done an impressive job selling people on the idea that electric cars are the future, and that these cars can legitimately replace vehicles that have historically run on fuel.
The Spark that Launched Tesla
Tesla’s initial public offering (IPO) occurred on June 29, 2010, with the company listed on the NASDAQ Exchange. On that date, the company’s shares were priced at US$17. About a year later, the company unveiled its first model, the “Model S,” which drove Tesla’s price up to US$25 per share. The Model S was the first-ever Tesla vehicle to be built from the ground up. It paved the way for the rest of company’s electric vehicle models. Although there had been previous electric cars released by other car companies, Tesla’s Model S was the first electric vehicle to have a range of over 250 miles without needing to be recharged. Within a few years, the Model S became the best-selling premium sedan in many markets. It is also considered to be a catalyst for pushing the entire automobile industry to consider the electric “powertrain” as a viable option.
Taking the Road Less Travelled with Self-Driving Cars
By late 2014, Tesla’s stock had risen to US$257, and the company’s vehicles had become household names. That year, Tesla introduced a self-driving feature to most of its cars, which allowed for autosteering, auto lane changes, auto parking and side-collision warning. The self-driving feature was unique, as self-driving cars had only been theorized prior to Tesla’s launch. The feature sealed Tesla’s reputation as the gold standard in automobile innovation.
Tesla continued to innovate and, in 2015, the company introduced its newest vehicle, the Model X. Model X was designed to be the world’s fastest SUV, and came with a unique design and slick features (like scissor doors). Globally, the company sold nearly 183,000 Model S and Model X vehicles in 2016.
Source: CNBC Television
Tesla, A Gold Standard in Automobile Innovation
Tesla recently celebrated the 10-year anniversary of its 2010 IPO, and the company’s progress over the past decade has been truly astonishing. The company has grown to be one of the most prominent car companies in the world. Recently, Tesla was named the world’s most valuable automaker, surpassing Toyota. As of July 1, 2020, Tesla shares were trading at nearly US$1,209 with a market capitalization of almost US$208 billion. In 2019, Tesla sold nearly 367,500 vehicles, which was a 50% increase over 2018.
Tesla’s most recent model, Model 3, has achieved great sales since its initial release in July 2017, and is now the best-selling electric vehicle of all time with nearly 500,000 deliveries in 2020. Model 3 also surpassed the Nissan Leaf as the top-selling plug-in car of all time. Tesla plans to continue its record of automobile innovation, and is expected to release its “Cybertruck” in 2021. The Cybertruck was introduced by Elon Musk on November 21, 2019, and has a unique, slick look that should attract truck drivers worried about the ongoing costs of filling up their tanks.
A recent BNN Bloomberg article, mentioned how many automobile companies are making greener choices and moving towards the two emerging technologies that Tesla built their growing automobile empire on – electric cars and self-driving cars. Volkswagen AG plans on exclusively making their autonomous cars electric and is scheduled to begin testing in 2022. Ford also has plans to launch self-driving cars, but in hybrid vehicles, that same year. As more car manufacturers follow suit, it is only a matter of time until Elon Musk’s dream of the future automobile becomes our day-to-day reality.
CARS ETF: Investing in Future Cars, Driving Our World Forward
The auto industry is poised to undergo the biggest transformation in a lifetime. With the automobile industry racing towards autonomous driving and electrification, there is a growing demand and opportunity to invest in this industry.
The Evolve Automobile Innovation Index Fund (TSX Ticker: CARS), CARS ETF, is Canada’s first automobile innovation ETF. CARS ETF takes a diversified approach to investing in the supply chains behind autonomous, connected, electric, and shared vehicles. The fund has a portfolio of 33* companies involved in the development of electric cars, self-driving cars, and automobile innovation. These include some of the world’s leading manufacturers and automobile companies such as Tesla, NIO Inc, Plug Power Inc, Aptiv PLC, Ferrari NV and Volkswagen AG.* CARS ETF is a great way to gain access to the future of the automobile and shift your investments into gear.
*CARS ETF portfolio as at June 30, 2020.