Strategy Analytics Press Releases

Electrified Powertrains See Widening Deployment from Plug-In Hybrids and the Tesla Gigafactory

by Kevin Mak | Oct 20, 2014
Electric and Hybrid Vehicles to Reach 12M Units by 2021, 10 Percent of Light Vehicle Production

Boston, MA - October 20, 2014 – In September 2014, Tesla announced the construction of the Gigafactory that will raise capacity to assemble battery cells and packs to supply up to 500,000 electric vehicles a year.  Auto makers have also planned to develop more plug-in hybrid models.  From these announcements, the Strategy Analytics Automotive Electronics Service (AES) report, OEM Hybrid and Electric Vehicle Strategies: Plug-In Hybrid and Tesla Gigafactory to Widen the Market, has outlined the potential widening of the market for electrified powertrains.  Production of plug-in hybrids will reach 2.9M units by 2021, with pure electric vehicles reaching close to 1.0M units.

"While there are incremental improvements to existing battery technology, the next step-up for battery chemistries will not be available until 2018 at the earliest," said Kevin Mak, Senior Analyst in the Automotive Electronics Service (AES) at Strategy Analytics.  "In the meantime, as charging infrastructures emerge, auto makers are increasingly developing plug-in hybrid powertrains as the short-to-medium term bridging technology.  This strategy can only be enabled by designing models with electrification at the outset and be built on platforms that enable flexibility and economies of scale."

However, Mak is guarded over Tesla’s ambitious Gigafactory plans, saying, "While the size of the project could provide impressive economies of scale, it is difficult to envisage the step-up for a start-up company that is assembling just 35,000 vehicles this year.  The project is a risky venture that would require an equally challenging improvement in build quality, increase in marketing and technical expertise in realizing a cost effective design to compete against world-leading luxury compact sedans, such as the BMW 3-Series."