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Automotive

How Electric Carmakers Make Billions from Fuel-Burning Competitors

By | Automotive

Sometimes it pays to be ahead of the curve.

While electric vehicles were once burdened by range anxiety and skimpy charger infrastructure, they’ve since ridden a wave of dramatic growth and mainstream acceptance. In fact, electric vehicle carmakers are enjoying the last laugh in more ways than one.

Why are the naysayers being proved wrong in spades? It’s not just that battery power has gone from zero to hero in the public eye. Electric vehicle carmakers are enjoying an unexpected windfall thanks to their future-forward ways because U.S. and European regulators have developed laws requiring carmakers to meet CO2 standards or face fines. Subsequently, manufacturers have relied on purchasing carbon credits from other carmakers if their fuel-burning fleets don’t meet the minimums.

Electric car offerings mean some manufacturers are way ahead in the carbon dioxide game, which doesn’t reflect too kindly on more internal combustion-focused carmakers. Brands like Fiat Chrysler, for instance, contributed more than $100 million to Tesla’s bottom line in 2018 because they didn’t attract enough buyers to their electric lineup. Similarly, Tesla has racked up more than $1.7 billion in carbon credits since 2012. In 2017 alone, electric vehicle-minded Toyota and Honda snagged nearly $110 million for the battery-powered cars in their portfolio—proof that progress, despite bumpy beginnings, can go richly rewarded.

The Year of the Electric Car

By | Automotive

World Copyright:
Mike Dodd / Beadyeye
Patrick Gosling / Beadyeye

There are over a million electric vehicles on U.S. roads, but 2020 is the year electric vehicles finally graduate from mere alternatives to internal combustion to a true force to be reckoned with.

Thanks to a tidal wave of new models from manufacturers, drivers will have an unprecedented array of options at their fingertips in the coming year: 40 models were available in 2019, and some 14 more options are expected to join the fray in 2020, stateside. Europeans will see the number leap from under 100 to 175.

Buzzworthy sleds like Porsche’s Taycan and Tesla’s long-awaited Model Y are right around the corner, Polestar is finally coming to market with the attainable follow-up to their sexy six-figure coupe and affordable offerings from the likes of the Volvo XC40 Recharge are bringing debut offerings from less mainstream brands. While sleeker, more affordable offerings will be hitting the road, the battery-powered genre is also getting bolstered by greater charging options. Volta’s network continues its expansion into metropolitan areas including LA, San Francisco, Chicago and Washington, D.C., joining some 20,000 charging outlets across the country. And as charging outlets become more plentiful, so do the distances electric vehicles can cover, with anticipated models like the Ford Mustang Mach-E and BMW i4 offering 300 and nearly 400 miles of range, respectively.

The rise of electric vehicles comes despite the phaseout of the U.S. Government’s federal tax credits. The silver lining for the electric car industry? Growth that is driven by genuine interest, not artificial stimulation. And that energy should continue well beyond 2020, proving to be more than a flash in the pan. With Volkswagen announcing plans to produce 1.5 million electric vehicles in 2025 and premium players like Audi, Bentley Motors and Mercedes-Benz going all-in on the technology, electric vehicles are proving to be both of the moment, and ready for the future.