General Motors to hit 5 million electric vehicle sales by 2030
General Motors (GM) has set an annual target for 1 million electric vehicle (EV) sales globally by the mid-2020s.
Although the company will only meet half of that target by 2026, it is expected to hit 5 million in cumulative EV sales by 2030 according to new research from Wood Mackenzie.
GM’s primary markets are currently North America and China, while the company also has a strong market share in South America. Due to declining sales and profits, GM sold its European brands in 2017 and exited the regional market.
The EU is the second largest EV market in the world, representing 25% of global EV sales by 2026. Without a presence in Europe, GM will need to win 30% of the US and 16% of the Chinese EV market to achieve its target of 1 million annual EV sales by 2026. It currently has 4.5% and 6.7%, respectively.
This challenge is compounded by the fact that 17% of current GM sales are from pick-up trucks, a segment not expected to electrify as quickly as passenger cars, according to the Wood Mackenzie report.
“GM’s target would entail capturing 12% of global EV market share by 2026. This will be challenging, particularly given its notable absence from the EU.
“Despite this, GM does have a clear-cut strategy towards electrification. It has divested from plug-in hybrids, with 90% of its EV sales coming from battery electric vehicles (BEVs). Earlier this year, GM announced a further $20 billion investment for new electric and autonomous vehicles.
“The modular electric drive platform is designed to fit vehicles of different classes. GM claims it will have a battery control unit at a module level, which can lead to more cost-effective repairs. The chemistry of the battery packs will be NCMA, therefore improving costs further by reducing cobalt by up to 70%.
"However, neither the platform nor the battery technology is ground-breaking,” said Ram Chandrasekaran, Wood Mackenzie Principal Analyst.
GM has also agreed a joint venture with LG Chem for a battery manufacturing plant in the US. Each company will contribute half of the $2.3 billion investment for the plant.
“If completed, this would be one of the largest battery manufacturing facilities in the world. The factory is intended to supply packs for GM’s electric pick-up trucks to be sold in the US. Initial planned capacity is 30 GWh, however the plant will be built with future expansion in mind,” added Chandrasekaran.