Electric vehicles have been supercharging the automotive industry in recent years and are projected to gain more traction in the near future. According to BloombergNEF, electric vehicles will make up nearly 52% of auto sales by 2030. However, with such widespread growth and surging demand for these new vehicles, manufacturers and vehicle shippers alike are faced with a whole host of challenges.
From a higher cost of production to infrastructure limitations and skeptical customers, electric vehicle manufacturers are presented with difficulties that don’t typically affect traditional car companies. Continue reading to learn about the top challenges facing EV OEMs and shippers.
Supply and demand
With EV sales seeing record growth in 2022 and nearly every major manufacturer jumping on the electric bandwagon, demand for EV parts has skyrocketed. In addition to the already scarce semiconductor chips and all the other standard parts needed to manufacture a vehicle, lithium-ion batteries and the materials to produce them are now highly sought after. This has manufacturers clamoring for parts to build their electric cars so they can enter the market with enough product to meet demand.
This pressure is likely to persist through the rest of the decade due to the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) push toward a more sustainable future, asking manufacturers to pledge that 50% of all new vehicle sales by the year 2030 will be EVs. Though not finalized, initiatives like this one are likely to affect EV sales and the demand for parts for years to come.
It’s no secret that electric vehicles don’t come cheap. By and large, EVs cost significantly more to produce than traditional gas-engine cars. For example, the average cost to produce a Tesla is $36,000, while the average production cost of a Toyota vehicle is just $12,500. And that’s not just because of Tesla’s prestigious brand name—the rare earth materials needed to make the batteries in EVs are the primary driver of this price, and applies to all electric vehicles.
The vehicle makers are spending a lot to build EVs and much of that cost is being passed on to the customers. The high price tag of electric cars is another hurdle that keeps some customers from buying and manufacturers from producing.
Fortunately, some of the production costs can be offset by government incentives. With a push towards greener and more sustainable modes of transportation happening around the world, EV manufacturers get a break on some of their expenses. Similarly, the high up-front costs to buy an EV can eventually be offset by ongoing fuel and maintenance savings, making them appealing to some customers.
With traditional combustion engine vehicles being the standard in transportation, the country’s infrastructure has been built around fueling them. Gas stations and service shops are easy to come by just about anywhere in the U.S., but charging stations and EV maintenance specialists are far less common. This creates two problems: more work for the EV manufacturers and more reasons for consumers to be skeptical of EVs.
In order for their vehicles to be viable nationwide, EV companies need reliable charging stations wherever their customers drive. This could mean building their own stations like Tesla and Volvo have already done, or working with third-party manufacturers like ChargePoint and Blink to install enough stations to keep their customers charged up.
The lack of charging stations in rural areas is a valid concern for many drivers. One of the main reasons customers are hesitant to adopt EVs as their primary mode of transportation is because they fear they won’t be able to charge their vehicles conveniently or will run out of charge on a long drive. Some EV drivers even find themselves waiting in line to charge their batteries, with each charge taking at least 30 minutes to complete—that’s on the low end of charging times. Until more stations are available across the country, many drivers will stay loyal to their traditional gas-powered vehicles.
EV batteries are the driving force behind the electric revolution, but they’re also the cause of many difficulties for both manufacturers and prospective customers. In addition to being costly and time-consuming to produce, the lithium-ion battery that EVs use only last for about eight years and then needs to be replaced. Manufacturers have yet to develop an efficient and effective solution for recycling or disposing of expired batteries. Unfortunately, these dead batteries create another environmental concern that is yet to be solved.
EV batteries are also vulnerable to temperature changes more than traditional vehicles. As the temperature drops, so too does the battery’s ability to hold a charge. This makes electric vehicles a less viable option for traveling in freezing temperatures and is another challenge that manufacturers are working to overcome. It’s also something that manufacturers and shippers both need to keep in mind when storing and transporting electric vehicles.
To safely transport EVs, vehicle carriers need special training and equipment beyond what is required for moving traditional vehicles. Due to the lithium-ion battery found in all electric vehicles, transporters must meet special requirements to guarantee the safety of the vehicles. With fewer shippers being fully qualified to move electric cars, it could take longer to get them to lots and customer driveways.
If you need to move new EV models, consider working with Montway Auto Transport. We have 15+ years of experience moving all types of vehicles and work with some of the biggest names in electric vehicle manufacturing.
The final challenge facing EV manufacturers is the customers themselves. A few early adopters and forward-thinking motorists were eager to get behind the wheel of an EV, but others aren’t so sure. Not only are people generally resistant to change, but the electric vehicle industry is relatively new and still largely in the trial-and-error phase. This lack of predictability makes it hard for the average consumer to put their faith in such a significant purchase.
A limited number of vehicle options, combined with a lack of standardization (such as a universal charger for every electric vehicle) and scarce charging stations, turn many car buyers away from battery-powered vehicles. Until these pain points are resolved, there is always going to be a large part of the automotive market that just isn’t interested in what electric car manufacturers have to offer.
Fortunately, as more automakers step into the electric market, these vehicles will continue to become more accessible and reliable. In fact, 816,154 plug-in hybrid vehicles (PHEV) and battery electric vehicles (BEV) were sold in 2022. In total, 3,166,594 PHEVs and BEVs have been sold since 2010, according to Argonne National Laboratory. The Tesla Model Y and Tesla Model 3 are the best-selling electric vehicles in the US, but other EVs like the Ford Mustang Mach-E, Chevrolet Bolt EV and Nissan Leaf have provided increased variety and affordable options that appeal to more drivers.
Safe and efficient EV transportation
Whether you need to move a single car or an entire fleet, Montway Auto Transport has proven success moving all types of vehicles—including electric cars, trucks and motorcycles. With a professional network of over 15,000 carriers, your EV is in safe hands with Montway. Speak with a vehicle specialist at 888-998-4161 to learn more.