News from China Finance Union (Editor Liu Rui in Shanghai),JB Straubel, tesla's co-founder, continues to be bullish on the demand outlook for electric vehicles, particularly in the U.S., where demand could surge faster than the market expects. But he also noted that the capacity of electric vehicles could limit the pace of growth in the industry, given supply constraints such as raw materials for power batteries and semiconductors.
Demand for electric vehicles is soaring, but production capacity isn't rising fast enough, Mr. Strubel said in an interview.
"It caught people a bit off guard," says Mr Strubel. "It's a very powerful shift. Sales of internal combustion engines are declining in different parts of the world, while electric vehicle sales are up almost 100 per cent."
Current industry projections that electric vehicles will account for 12.7 percent of U.S. vehicle sales by 2025 May be too low, Straubel said.
"If you look at how quickly parts of Europe and other parts of the world have adopted electric vehicles, I think the percentage [of total VEHICLE sales in the US] could be even higher by 2025 or so," he said.
Global capacity for lithium-ion batteries was 713 gigawatt hours last year, according to AlixPartners, the automotive industry consultancy. Alixpartners expects that figure to more than triple to 2,273 gigawatt hours by 2025, while electric vehicle battery production in the US will more than quadruple.
With so much capacity coming online, the conventional wisdom is that the cost of batteries and packs will fall, which will help drive down the price of electric cars and boost profits. ESource, a consultancy that tracks power battery prices, estimates that the cost per kilowatt-hour of an automotive battery will fall to $98 by 2025 from $147 in 2022.
While these predictions are encouraging, the battery supply chain may not necessarily evolve to the desired level.
Stephen Brown, senior director at Fitch Ratings, said: "With battery demand expected to be at such a high level over the next decade or so,The raw materials for these batteries are likely to remain in short supply。”
Nor is Mr Strubel convinced that the ev battery industry will be ready to meet growing demand.
"He said.There is definitely a risk that we could see a renewed shortage of semiconductors,This could slow down and hinder the growth of electric vehicles."