A collection of curated stories from client industries, CX and global trends that grab our attention.
We also continue to see increased investment in local EV battery manufacturing, which I am sure will help prevent shortages in the future, like the ones we’ve seen with chips. Here’s this October’s key stories about the next step in EV ubiquity.
Are We Ready?
By 2050, the state of New York projects that electric cars, trucks and buses will use 14% of New York’s total output. That’s equivalent to half of all the electricity used in New York City in 2019 – so it’s like powering a new city of 4 million people. Overall demand could grow by as much as 50% between then and now as well. On one hand, we may not be ready for the “onslaught” of EVs on our way to “zero emissions.” But on the other hand, we’re doing our best to be as prepared as possible.
- A challenge for the nation's grid: How we move to full electric vehicles isn’t just about engineering the cars anymore. If challenges in upstate New York, California, Texas and Louisiana are any indication, America’s power grids must weather natural disasters better while increasing their capacities for maximum power storage – here’s the financial cost to doing so.
- Midwest leading the charge: In Michigan, Governor Gretchen Whitmer announced the state’s new initiative to develop America’s first EV “charging road” in the country. This project may promote EV infrastructure where charging stations are sparse like the Midwest, and there’s other public- and tourism-related reasons to watch how this develops.
- Speaking of Michigan...: Michigan power vendor Consumers Energy recently emailed links to its customers to promote its EV focus and charging station plans. A press release from April 2021 falls in line with the vendor’s long-term goals, earmarking the birth state of the automobile as a place for the second car renaissance.
What OEMs Are Doing
Auto manufacturers understand their role in helping develop the infrastructure needed to make EVs a permanent fixture on American roads. To that end, everything from white-glove customer service to guaranteeing charging stations everywhere is in bounds to not only create, but continually improve upon as we go deeper into the decade.
- The Angels of Ford Motor Company: Responding to news that Mustang Mach-E owners are reporting a less-than-stellar charging experience, Ford is deploying a team of specially instrumented Mach-Es to travel the nation and test individual chargers wherever they may be. Automotive News has more on when one can expect to see these ‘Charge Angels’ appear.
- GM to invest millions in EV infrastructure: On Investor Day, General Motors pledged to invest $750 million into EV charging infrastructure for the U.S. and Canada, aiming to make Level 2 and fast-charging stations as ubiquitous as gas stations. Here’s how their smartphone app, Ultium Charge 360, will help to facilitate this expansion.
- Triple the Tesla, triple the charge: At a recent investor conference, Tesla manager Drew Baglino announced that the EV automaker wants to triple its fast-charging network by 2023. This move is sparked by the fact that its deliveries are outpacing its current charging network growth. This article details more of its expansion plans.
- GM + Dealers = Robust charging network: In addition to the millions pledged in North American infrastructure, GM is partnering with their dealers to build an additional network of 40,000 EV charging stations by 2025. But they’re not planned to appear where you might think – here’s where they’re going.
Always Be Charging
It’s not just the big-marquee OEM names that are finding ways to innovate in the EV space. There’s several small startups and older auto suppliers alike that are discovering new ways to stay in the game and offer new products to the world.
- Camp with security in your charge: Towing a camping trailer halves EV charge due to the extra weight. Colorado Teardrops claims to have hundreds of preorders for a camper that houses enough potential charge to offset that use, but when will it release? Here’s the scoop.
- Could these be Apple's first EVs?: In mid-October, Foxconn Technology Group recently unveiled its first electric vehicles at its flagship plant in Taipei. While these SUV and sedan models are still in the concept stage, this reveal may have implications for the future of Apple Inc.’s venture into EVs, as the two companies are close partners in the smartphone industry.
- A new lord in Lordstown: Lordstown Motors is nearing an agreement to sell its Lordstown, Ohio, plant to Foxconn Technology Group. This deal is expected to benefit both companies, as vehicle manufacturing in the same location will defray costs and help meet 2022 production deadlines once thought improbable.
For further information on how we got to where we are, I encourage you to check out our previous ICYMI blog posts throughout 2021.