In April, the Biden administration announced proposed regulations requiring a significant portion of new vehicles sold in the United States to be electric by 2032. The new regulations—one a tailpipe pollution limits for cars and the other rule aimed at heavy-duty vehicles—would mean 67% of new light-duty passenger vehicles, 46% of new medium-duty trucks, 50% of new buses, and 25% of new heavy trucks sold would be all-electric by 2032.
Although the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is not permitted by law to mandate that car manufacturers sell a specific number of electric vehicles (EVs), under the Clean Air Act the agency can limit the total pollution produced by all the vehicles each manufacturer sells. The regulations as proposed have been constructed to ensure that the companies can only be compliant with such a pollution cap by selling a certain percentage of zero-emissions EVs.1
Also in April, future EV charging infrastructure in Canada got a big boost, with the Canada Infrastructure Bank announcing a loan of $220 million to Montreal-based Flo Services Inc. to expand its network of universal public fast charging ports.
The loan (the first from the bank’s $500 million fund for increasing EV charging and hydrogen refueling options for Canadian drivers) will enable Flo to install more than 2,000 charging ports at 400 sites nationwide. The installations will use Flo’s dual-port, 320-kilowatt chargers that can charge most EV batteries to 80% in 15 minutes.2
Updates on Specific EV Manufacturers
BYD Company Ltd
Chinese electric vehicle manufacturer BYD Co. posted sensational Q1 results in April. Net profits were up 410.9% to 4.13 billion yuan ($596.56 million) year-over-year, with revenue up 79.8% YoY to 120.17 billion yuan. As part of its earnings report, BYD Co. reported combined sales of 552,076 plug-in hybrids and pure electric cars in Q1, up more than 92% year-on-year. BYD Co. sold 1.86 million vehicles in all of 2022, mainly in China.3
Also in April, BYD Co. unveiled the BYD DiSus Intelligent Body Control System (DiSus System) at its Shenzhen headquarters. A new technology developed in-house by BYD, the DiSus System is an intelligent vehicle body control technology designed exclusively for new energy vehicles like plug-in hybrids and pure electric cars. It promises to improve the EV driving experience significantly.4
High-tech automotive startup Canoo Inc announced it had entered into a long-term lease agreement for its Vehicle Manufacturing Facility in Oklahoma City. Canoo’s agreement is for an initial 500,000 square feet of factory space, with the ability to expand across more than 120 acres. Canoo expects to initially employ more than 500 people in a full general and final vehicle assembly line, with a facility including state-of-the-art robotics, complete vehicle testing, and validation.5
Investing in Electric Vehicles with CARS ETF
The auto industry is undergoing the biggest transformation in our lifetimes and there is a growing demand for ways 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 development of electric cars, self-driving cars, and automobile innovation, including in some of the world’s leading manufacturers and automobile companies. CARS ETF is a simple way to gain access to the future of the automobile and shift your investments into gear.
CARS ETF Portfolio Strategy and Activity
For the month, Fisker Inc made the largest contribution to the Fund, followed by Canoo Inc and BYD Company Ltd. The largest detractors to performance for the month were Tesla Inc, followed by MaxLinear Inc and FuelCell Energy Inc. On the last rebalance, these securities were added to the portfolio: Sensata Technologies Holding PLC and Vitesco Technologies Group AG.
- Davenport, C., “E.P.A. Lays Out Rules to Turbocharge Sales of Electric Cars and Trucks,” The New York Times, April 12, 2023; https://www.nytimes.com/2023/04/12/climate/biden-electric-cars-epa.html
- “Canada Infrastructure Bank earmarking $220M to expand EV charging network,” Global News, April 26, 2023; https://globalnews.ca/news/9653012/canada-ev-charging-network/
- “Chinese EV giant BYD’s first-quarter profit jumps fivefold,” Reuters, April 27, 2023; https://www.reuters.com/business/autos-transportation/chinas-byd-posts-410-leap-first-quarter-profit-2023-04-27/
- “BYD Reveals DiSus Intelligent Body Control System, Exclusively For New Energy Vehicles,” BYD, April 12, 2023; https://en.byd.com/news/byd-reveals-disus-intelligent-body-control-system-exclusively-for-new-energy-vehicles/
- “Canoo Secures Oklahoma City Manufacturing Facility,” Canoo, April 10, 2023; https://investors.canoo.com/news-presentations/press-releases/detail/101/canoo-secures-oklahoma-city-manufacturing-facility