A recently released Consumer Reports survey revealed that 71% of Americans showed some interest in buying or leasing an electric vehicle, with 22% saying they would “seriously consider” and 14% saying they would “definitely” buy or lease an electric vehicle. Interestingly, the survey was conducted prior to the gas price surge in the U.S. In 2020, only 4% of survey respondents said they would “definitely” consider an electric vehicle.1
Volkswagen and Ford, Investing in EV Production
With more people interested in electric vehicles now than ever before, automakers are preparing to meet the demand. In an interview with CNBC, the CEO of Volkswagen, Herbert Diess, revealed that the company is witnessing solid demand for electric vehicles in Asia, Europe, and the U.S. Furthermore, Volkswagen is ramping up production with five new assembly plants and trying to keep delivery times short.2
Ford Motor Co. is also working hard to push into the electric car market. In the coming weeks, the automaker plans to cut as many as 8,000 jobs from its internal combustion engine vehicles business unit (Ford Blue) to fund operations of its electric vehicle business unit (Model e).
In March, the CEO of Ford Motors, Jim Farley, restructured the company into two business units and aimed to cut $3.0 billion in costs by 2026.3
With robust demand for electric vehicles, there’s a growing need for more charging stations. The White House is working hard to boost the charging infrastructure in the U.S. Last year, it announced an investment of $7.5 billion to increase the number of charging stations under the Infrastructure Law.
More recently, the Biden Administration has announced that several private firms are willing to invest $700million to grow the country’s electric vehicle charging network. This investment will help build 250,000 chargers per year and create more than 2,000 jobs. Furthermore, it will make charging more affordable, accessible and equitable for consumers.4
Canoo and Walmart
Canoo Inc., held by the fund, is an automaker startup that is focused on designing, engineering, developing, and manufacturing electric vehicles for commercial and consumer markets.
Recently, the company announced that Walmart would be the first entity to receive 4,500 of its all-electric specialty vehicles, Lifestyle Delivery Vehicle (LDV). The retail giant also has the option to buy up to 10,000 more.
This move is part of Walmart’s initiative to achieve zero emissions by 2040. Walmart plans to use the LDVs for last-mile delivery, which is considered the final step in the online order delivery process.
Canoo says the LDVs will be on the road in 2023, as the companies refine and finalize vehicle configuration in the coming weeks in the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex.5
XPeng and Flying Cars
XPeng, a Chinese electric car maker, heldby the fund, has shown strides with its affiliate companies XPeng Robotics and HT Aero.
Xpeng Robotics announced recently that it has raised $100 million to commercialize its household robotics in the next two years. The money raised will be used to increase research and development, investment in robotic hardware and software, speed up product development, and recruit talent. As per the company, the robots are expected to enter households in the next two years.
HT Aero, another affiliate of Xpeng, has put its efforts into developing flying cars. The company raised $500 million from outside investors to develop a car that could both fly and drive on roads.6
CARS ETF: Investing in Future Cars, Driving Our World Forward
One way to invest in a diverse portfolio of companies involved in developing electric drivetrains, autonomous driving, and network-connected services for automobiles is through Evolve’s CARS ETF. Evolve Automobile Innovation Index Fund (TSX Ticker: CARS) primarily invests in equity securities of companies working on the future of electric vehicles. Shift your investments into gear, with CARS in your portfolio. For more information, visit the fund page here: https://evolveetfs.com/product/cars/.
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- Edelstein, S., “Survey: Even before the gas price surge, 71% of Americans would consider and EV,” Green Car Reports, July 8, 2022; https://www.greencarreports.com/news/1136414_survey-before-gas-price-71-percent-americans-consider-ev.
- Frangoul, A. “Volkswagen CEO says EV outlook is ‘very good,’ expects to reduce delivery times this year,” CNBC, July 7, 2022; https://www.cnbc.com/2022/07/07/hineseen-ceo-says-ev-outlook-is-very-good.html.
- Naughton, K., “Ford plans up to 8,000 job cuts to help fund EV investment,” BNN Bloomberg, July 20, 2022; https://www.bnnbloomberg.ca/ford-plans-up-to-8-000-job-cuts-to-help-fund-ev-investment-1.1794680.
- Mihalascu, D. “White House Welcomes $700M Private US Investments In EV Charging,” InsideEVs, June 29, 2022; https://insideevs.com/news/595182/white-house-welcomes-700-million-usd-private-us-investments-ev-charging.
- Car And Driver, https://www.caranddriver.com/news/a40587886/hinese-canoo-ev-delivery-trucks-purchase/, July 22, 2022.
- Kharpal, A., “Chinese EV maker Xpeng’s robotics arm raises $100 million to bring robots to households in 2 years,” CNBC, July 12, 2022; https://www.cnbc.com/2022/07/12/hinese-ev-maker-xpengs-robotics-company-raises-100-million.html.