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EV Company News For The Month Of February 2018


  • Global electric car sales - January 2018 sales were up 94% on January 2017.
  • EV market news - Diesel cars can be banned from German cities, court rules. China launches world’s first all-electric cargo ship.
  • EV company news - Tesla energy storage division gains 2 new large contracts. Nissan to invest $9 Billion in China in race for EV dominance.

Welcome to the February 2018 edition of Electric Vehicle [EV] company news. January is usually the slowest month of the year for EV sales, and January 2018 was slower than December but a good start to 2018. As far as company news, the past month has signaled what to expect in 2018. That is car makers and battery makers are looking to lock in their EV metal supply due to fears of shortages. Recent news in this area has seen three large companies make their move - The Toyota Tsusho lithium equity off-take deal with Orocobre (OTCPK:OROCF), the SK Innovation cobalt/nickel off-take and equity option deal with Australian Mines (OTCPK:AMSLF), and now the Posco lithium off-take and equity deal with Pilbara Minerals (OTCPK:PILBF). Next, we are waiting for BMW (OTCPK:BMWYY), VW (OTCPK:VLKAF), and others.

A quick recap on 2017

Last month, I reported on a booming 2017 which saw 2017 total year sales ended at a record 1,223,000, up 58% on 2016, and reaching ~1.4% market share. You can read more here. The following charts show the clear trend of EVs growing well.

Global electric cars sales grew 58% in 2017 - and H2 was very strong

Global electric car market share in 2017 - averaged ~1.4% and peaked at 2% in December

Source: EV-Volumes

Global electric car sales as of end January 2018

Global electric car sales finished January 2018 with ~82,000 sales for the month, up 94% on January 2017.

Of note, 56% of all global electric car sales so far in 2018 were pure electric, which should rise as the year goes on.

China electric car sales were ~35,000 in January 2018, up four-fold on January 2017 (noting January 2017 was a terrible result as subsidies were reduced and there was a licensing crackdown). Electric car market share

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Comments (40)

dgavrile profile picture
Chinese Battery Maker to Open Factory Next to Swedish EV Plant
Trend Investing profile picture
"VW Secures $25 Billion Battery Supplies in Electric-Car Surge."
"Volkswagen AG secured 20 billion euros ($25 billion) in battery supplies to underpin an aggressive push into electric cars in the coming years......The world’s largest carmaker will equip 16 factories to produce electric vehicles by the end of 2022, compared with three currently, Volkswagen said Tuesday in Berlin. The German manufacturer’s plans to produce as many as 3 million electric cars a year by 2025 is backstopped by deals with battery suppliers in Europe and China.....From next year, the 12 brand group will roll out a new electric vehicle “virtually every month."
Trend Investing profile picture
dgavrile - Thank you. I had a read over the weekend. Interesting that the Total CEO drives an EV. Cheers.
dgavrile profile picture
What the World's Oil Giants Said About Electric Cars at CERAWeek

dgavrile profile picture
Diesel again, do not be so sure about their accelerate extinction. As much as they are seen as "dying dinosaurs" of ICEage it looks like things are not so simple and sure and reality is much more complicated.
I do believe diesel are here to stay for longer time, even I would invest in a second hand diesel within the next 2 years for a life span of another 10 years (no plan to resell afterword).

Looks live VW agrees ;-), what is your opinion.

VW Boss Predicts ‘Renaissance’ for Embattled Diesel Cars
dgavrile profile picture
For interested people a collection of interesting articles debating diesel vs EV topic.
Ford Sued for Allegedly Rigging Diesel Engines


Congress May Seek New VW Emissions-Cheating Probe


A Merkel Alliance With the Greens? It Could Happen


Diesel Cars Adored by Austrians Drive Into Electoral Fray


Ford Offers U.K. Drivers Cash to Scrap Dirty Diesel Engines


VW, Mercedes Diesel Rebates Set to Lure 1.3 Million Drivers


U.K. Car Sales Drop Most Since Recession on Brexit, Diesel


Rival Accuses Merkel of Being Slow to Act Over Diesel Crisis


Rebate Battle Looms as VW Trumps Daimler, BMW on Trade-In Bonus


VW Diesel-Cheat System Is Said to Be Tied to Secret German Site


The Diesel Scandal Haunts Bosch’s Hopes to Be a Global Giant


Merkel Aide Says Germany Has ‘Vital Interest’ in Diesel Survival


Diesel collapse gives automakers carbon headache


Enjoy !!
China should be lauded for its very aggressive nuclear pant building.
Bill Watts profile picture
Matt, That Bloomberg article on 2018 China subsidies was highly misleading. The revision in the subsidies law will greatly reduce the subsidies for most models, some by over 50%. The real facts are here: http://bit.ly/2Fd9Fgf

There is also the elephant in the room that the Western media does not know about because the Chinese media will not voice criticism of the PRC government. EV car manufacturers have been advancing the PRC government mandated subsidies to the end buyer. The government has not yet reimbursed the EV manufacturers for all of 2015. The government is delaying reimbursement 2-3 years. In 2015 a typical subsidy was over $7,000 and in 2017 about $6,000. Example: In 2017 BAIC's EV subsidiary BJEV sold 103,199 EVs, so at an approx. $6,000/EV sold, BJEV spent 103,199 x $6,000 = $619 Million advancing the PRC government mandated subsidies. This is only one year and one manufacturer. This is effectively a 0% interest loan to the PRC government. This is placing a huge cash burden on the EV industry which needs cash to grow. The cash drain is likely about 5 times greater than the profit. And still no one speaks out or writes about this.
Trend Investing profile picture
Bill - Thanks for sharing. Yes I hear that subsidy payments to BYD are delayed etc. It is truly rare to find a good government these days.
dgavrile profile picture
If true and proven on large scale, this could be a big dent on the EV demand short-medium term as China leads and is seen as the major catalyst.
t0nutz profile picture
matt there is a problem here with subsidies being paid by this PRC government. kandi is not showing sales for jan and feb. so something is up with cash! they sold almost 15,000 cars for 2017 then no show for two months on sales. what bill say is correct. government is not paying out. not a big deal for ice makers that do both types but extremely damaging to all PEV makers that only make electric cars. please speak up more about this. if they kill this subsidy thing this will cause huge problems for the industry!
MN investor profile picture
That is AWESOME - electric cargo ship to haul coal :-)
cparmerlee profile picture
MN, if you wanted to experiment with a whole new technology in shipping that is likely to have a big learning curve and unpredictable performance ingest generation, what payload would you suggest?
cparmerlee profile picture
I meant "in the first generation", not "ingest generation".

People need to get of their high horses of irony. China is making smart moves all over this space while the US is being left behind.

What has China done?

1) Worked for decades to secure rare earth minerals that will be crucial to new energy

2) Developed a dominant position in electric city buses, a business that is profitable and that secures a solid foundation for advanced battery development.

3) Developed world class high speed train networks to make inter-urban transit affordable and very efficient.

4) Developed hybrid and BEV cars that will really address the urban needs of the emerging middle class Chinese, not the ultra-rich.

5) Built battery factories that truly are of the giga-kW scale.

What has the US done?

1) Supported a company that is highly corrupt, providing massive subsidies for exotic cars bought only by the top 5% of the population, making absolutely no impact on our energy or climate concerns.

2) Avoided national standards and investments in a public, universal charging network that would enable BEVs to be practical.

3) Invested in battery and solar factories that produce products of a form factor that nobody wants (roll-up cells and solar roofs.)

So please spare us the snarky comments about ironies. The only irony here is that China is taking the lead in yet another crucial new energy industry (global shipping) and all the "new energy geniuses" in the US don't even recognize that. That's ironic.

If the US took all that money it has used to subsidize Tesla and the lavish lifestyle of the crooks at the head of that company, we could make smart investments that would allow us to actually compete with China.
Trend Investing profile picture
cparmerlee - Most western governments are too bloated to actually help the people, many others are too corrupt. So agree China is doing quite well and at least addressing urban problems such as pollution.
Matt so how do these EV sales projections translate to the Lithium market? Do these figures mean it is more likely that Lithium needs exceed expectation or meet expectation for the coming years?
Trend Investing profile picture
Mayurik - I have covered that with two articles recently on Trend Investing and in the chat room, so you would need to join to see my models on lithium demand v supply.
"My Lithium Demand Versus Supply Model - Updated February 2018."

Thank you for the very informative write up.
I enjoyed reading it.

How would you rate KARS as a Buy and Hold investment???
I would like to hear your opinion.

Keep up the Good Work!!!
Trend Investing profile picture
Herbert C - Actually I have not yet had time to form an opinion on KARS. I was just happy to offer another choice to investors.
Why is ALB and SQM getting hit so hard if EV projections are so good?
cenc profile picture
because moron stanley seems to think there will be no demand for lithium, in 7 years. the above numers say they are right. the demand will be right now.
gnwilliams profile picture
michaelcmoy, new and expanded mines suggest large increases in future supply, larger than projected demand, some say.
VOLVY is not Volvo automotive...
As of today, Bloomberg is estimating that Tesla never produced more than 977 Model 3's in any week, and only 857 for the most recent week. These are estimates that change from day to day, but the Model 3 ramp is going very slowly, considering that Tesla claimed to have been able to hit the 1000 unit per week level in late December.
Well, it's better than I feared. I just hope they can manage 2,000 a week by the end June.
Looks like EVs are the future. Yay
sam026 profile picture
Tesla only leads in hype for autonomous driving. They promise and sell but don't deliver.
fishfryer profile picture
Great write up, thanks for the info.
An electric-powered ship to transport coal? To cut pollution? What is the coal going to be used for?
ROFL - indeed!

“Cargo vessels tend to be some of the biggest carbon pollution sources in the entire transportation sector. Second, it will lower the cost of transportation for bulk cargoes because the price of electricity is lower than the price of diesel fuel."

What don’t you understand? China needs to use coal for power but they see a way to cut costs and pollution at least in transportation.
Morganic, but China generates a lot of their electric power from coal. So the ship maybe gets its power from a coal fired plant.
Maybe a nice experiment, but not doing much for the environment when they continue to generate electric power from coal
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