View session recording below.
During the 2023 MICHauto Summit, John McElroy, Host of Autoline, and Joseph McCabe, President and Chief Executive Officer of AutoForecast Solutions LLC, took the stage to discuss Michigan’s electric vehicle (EV) challenges and future—providing Summit attendees with a reality check on the industry. The discussion began with a keynote from speakers and ended with a lightning round of questions.
A Race to Manufacture
McElroy began the conversation with a keynote on his stance on the EV industry, sharing a blurb from his 2018 op-ed on a bleak outlook on the EV industry and a narrative that EVs are best avoided.
“I wrote that five years ago,” McElroy said. “I don’t think I would change one word today.”
As for where the EV industry is today, EVs have become politicized, and automakers are losing billions of dollars on their electric vehicle programs each year. However, McElroy ended his keynote optimistically by noting that Tesla lost money for over a decade and did not turn the corner until mid-2019. He predicts that Legacy vehicles won’t catch up in the EV market until around 2026.
Tackling Industry Disruptors
Then McCabe took the stage to tell the empirical part of the EV industry story. He began with the four hurdles of EV adoption: cost, range, infrastructure, and raw materials.
From there, McCabe dove into the data and discussed the many disruptors to the industry, including the number of manufacturers in North America doubling before 2030, who will pull away from the legacy players and distract consumers.
According to McCabe’s data, North American EV production is currently at the “bottom of the hockey stick,” and production in the upcoming years will remain steady before a significant increase. But he predicts Tesla will not be the winner of the BEV production leaderboard, with Volkswagen and Stellantis overtaking Tesla by the decade’s end.
“I’m not anti-EV. I’m pro-reality,” McCabe said. “We are moving forward. It’s just going to be really long to get there.”