Batteries California Cars China Clean Transport Consumer Technology Electric Cars Electric Vehicles Energy Storage EV Charging EV Charging Stations EV sales Green Economy investment Lithium-Ion Batteries Technology Tesla Tesla Model 3 US

My 24 EV Predictions For 2018 — How Did I Do?

Tesla Kettleman City Supercharger - view of lounge from charger stall

Tesla Kettleman City Supercharger - view of lounge from charger stall

Revealed on January 11th, 2019 |
by Loren McDonald

January 11th, 2019 by Loren McDonald 

“Prediction is very difficult, especially if it’s about the future.”
— Nils Bohr, Nobel laureate in Physics

“Forecasting is the artwork of claiming what is going to occur, after which explaining why it didn’t! “
— Nameless (communicated by Balaji Rajagopalan)

Supply: Well-known Forecasting Quotes

Predicting the longer term is straightforward, being right is in fact a lot more durable. One of many issues that most individuals (together with myself) dislike about those that make predictions is the shortage of accountability. A prediction is made, however not often does the forecaster report again on how they did.

On December 31, 2017, my CleanTechnica article “2 Dozen Electrical Car Predictions For 2018“ went reside. In it I made 24 predictions concerning the electrical car market. Some commenters thought many sounded just like the by-product of press releases, whereas others thought a number of have been pretty daring. The reality is, there was a little bit of each varieties.

I like to carry myself accountable, so the next are the two dozen predictions I made and the way I fared. I’ve included two kinds of scores:

  • A cross/fail quantity — Did the prediction come true?
  • A numerical credit score or partial credit score if I obtained some facet of the prediction right.

How did I do? Properly, not so good. Take a look at the whole of my scores on the finish of the article.

1. ExxonMobil and/or BP every purchase an EV charging firm.

2. Chinese language automaker GAC Motors pronounces it can enter the US market with an electrical CUV in 2019 via a partnership with Fiat Chrysler (FCA).

  • Full miss on this one. This was a stretch to start with.
  • Fail/zero

three. Tesla unveils the Mannequin Y CUV throughout its most watched stay occasion ever and receives 500,000 reservations inside 1 week.

  • This was a slightly apparent prediction, however one which can truly turned out to not come true. The Mannequin Y reveal is now anticipated to occur in March 2019.
  • Fail/zero
Tesla Model Y artist rendering-Miguel Massé-Twitter

Artist Rendering/Picture Supply: Miguel Massé, Twitter

four. Tesla joins the refrain of solid-state battery bulletins and says it’ll ship a brand new mannequin with solid-state batteries by 2023.

  • Whereas there was no solid-state battery announcement from Tesla and Panasonic, and it’s wanting unlikely anytime quickly, the battery companions have introduced plans to supply a cobalt-free battery within the subsequent few years.
  • Fail/zero

5.  California falls simply in need of reaching EV gross sales of 10% of latest car gross sales within the state.

  • In August, California had an EV gross sales market share of slightly below 10% (9.90%). That month, California accounted for 53% of all US EV gross sales. In September and This fall, gross sales of the Tesla Mannequin three ramped up and we all know that a excessive proportion of those deliveries are in California. So I’m assuming a a lot larger common within the ultimate months, however I will go together with 53% for all the yr since earlier within the yr was a bit decrease. The California New Automotive Sellers Affiliation has predicted gross sales for the yr of slightly below 2 million. So if we assume 53% X 361,307 (US EV gross sales)/2,000,000 = 9.57%. I’m claiming it.
  • Move/1

6. US EV gross sales almost double and attain 2% of all new car gross sales.

  • Landing! Based on my very own evaluation, the US reached a brand new EV gross sales market share of two.08% in 2018.
  • Cross/1

2016-2018 Sales & %-Jan 4-2018

7. Tesla wins a US Supreme Courtroom case that allows the corporate to promote autos on to shoppers in all 50 states.

  • I was reaching on this one, however it appeared a distant risk. This prediction was an enormous miss.
  • Fail/zero

eight. Ford and GM announce plans for PHEV variations of considered one of their giant SUVs and pickup vans.

Lincoln Aviator-Lincoln

Picture Supply:

9. Fiat Chrysler (FCA) receives a big funding from Google and companions with GAC Motors to leverage their electrical drivetrains for future EVs.

  • One other massive stretch that didn’t occur.
  • Fail/zero

10. US installations of EV charging stations endure delays due to an enormous scarcity of electricians.

  • This was much less of an actual prediction however extra of the thought of a number one indicator. A scarcity of electricians maybe didn’t occur in 2018, however I nonetheless do anticipate it to occur within the subsequent few years. In case you thought it was arduous to get a very good electrician shortly at present, simply wait till hundreds of thousands of People per yr set up charging stations of their houses.
  • Fail/zero

11. A number of US states suggest or implement new car taxes and costs to organize for a future decline in fuel tax income.

  • I thought this one was in all probability a slam dunk, however whereas plenty of states talked concerning the want for an alternate, my Google analysis didn’t flip up a single new state various to the fuel tax.
  • Fail/zero
Gas-Tax-July-2018-tax foundation

Picture Supply: Tax Basis

12. Fisker Inc. companions with Geely and shifts its focus to solid-state battery improvement and car design.

  • Fisker continues to be perplexing, with a number of press releases and tweets from Henry Fisker, however how a lot actual progress? Whereas the corporate didn’t associate with Geely, it did get an funding from Caterpillar Ventures and does appear to be very targeted on the event of solid-state batteries.
  • Fail/zero.5 (I’m being very beneficiant to myself on this one with half credit score)

13. BMW and Mercedes-Benz announce plans to incorporate wi-fi charging in all new EV fashions by 2021.

  • I thought this was a no brainer based mostly on conversations I had with business executives, however solely BMW made an announcement.
  • Fail/zero.5

14. The US reaches 60,000 (from a present 46,944) put in public chargers.

  • Based on my evaluation utilizing knowledge from the Various Fuels Knowledge Middle, by way of December 31, 2018, there have been 57,324 public charging stations/retailers within the US, about 2,700 lower than my goal.
  • Fail/zero.three (I’m being beneficiant and giving zero.three to myself on this one)

Public EV Charging stations as of Dec 31 2018

15. Tesla opens 50 “super” (40+ chargers) Supercharger facilities/lounges worldwide.

  • Apparently, I obtained a bit of too charged up on this one, with Tesla solely opening 2 Supercharger places in 2018 with 40 or extra charging stations, in line with Supercharge.information. They usually opened zero lounges just like the Kettleman Metropolis location.
  • Fail/zero
Tesla Kettleman City Supercharger - view of lounge from charger stall

Picture Supply: Loren McDonald

16. GM opens a brand new fast-charging/showroom/meals service middle idea in partnership with Panera Bread (fast-casual restaurant chain) in 2 California check places. The pilot tasks additionally embrace particular charging stations for Chevy Bolt drivers utilizing the Maven ride-sharing program.

  • Hmm, maybe I was overzealous on considering a automotive firm may assume out of the field.
  • Fail/zero

17. Google launches a house EV charger underneath the Nest product line and in addition launches a cellular advertising-based EV charging community and acquires Volta Charging.

  • I was fallacious on each counts, however I nonetheless assume one or each of those predictions will come true, however in all probability not for an additional 2–three years.
  • Fail/zero
Google Nest

Picture Supply: Loren McDonald screenshot of

18. No less than 5 extra nations or cities announce plans to ban gross sales of inner combustion automobiles – the US won’t be one among them.

19. The Entire Meals grocery store chain considerably expands the variety of EV charging stations at its shops and makes charging free for members of the Amazon Prime program.

  • Fumbled this one and will have gone with Goal. Entire Meals did add a number of charging stations in 2018 and now has them at greater than 100 of their 479 shops, however they didn’t increase “significantly”or join their program with Amazon Prime membership.
  • Fail/zero
ChargePoint-retail-parking-lot Charging station

Picture Supply: ChargePoint

20. International gross sales of EVs will attain 1.75 million in 2018 and four.75 million all time.

  • Rating! With estimates for China of 1 million, Europe at 375,000, Canada at 50,000, and the reported 361,000 within the US by way of InsideEVs, we’re taking a look at 1,786,000 in 2018. With cumulative gross sales on the finish of 2017 at simply over three million models, we should always eke previous the four.75 million mark. (Word: I’m not even together with gross sales from non-Chinese language Asia within the rely.)
  • Cross/1

21. The Tesla Mannequin three breaks a number of electrical car gross sales data, together with being the primary EV to promote greater than 200,000 models in a single yr and greater than 10,000 and 20,000 in gross sales per 30 days within the US.

  • With international gross sales of 145,846, I considerably overshot on the corporate delivering 200,000 Mannequin three models in 2018. The Mannequin three did have deliveries simply within the US of greater than 10,000 automobiles each month since July and reached greater than 20,000 in October and December.
  • Fail/zero.5 (Properly, obtained this one half right.)

Picture Supply: Zach Shahan, CleanTechnica

22. Tesla sells greater than 300,000 automobiles worldwide.

  • Tesla delivered 245,240 models in 2018. If it had delivered the 200,000 Mannequin 3s as predicted in #21 above, the corporate would have additionally reached 300,000 models delivered globally. However alas, one other fail.
  • Fail/zero

23. China EV gross sales almost double to 1,000,000.

  • Whereas the ultimate numbers aren’t but in, fellow CleanTechnica contributor Jose Pontes predicted in a November article that EV gross sales in China would certainly attain 1 million for the yr 2018.
  • Move/1 (I’m going to offer myself this one earlier than the ultimate numbers are in).

24. A serious fleet operator locations an order for 1,000 Chevrolet Bolts.

  • I crashed and burned on this one. I do assume there’s demand from fleet operators, the place I whiffed was in assuming that GM would scale manufacturing to satisfy demand from international markets, US shoppers, AND fleet operators. As an apart, Waymo did place an order for 20,000 Jaguar I-PACE EVs.
  • Fail/zero

Picture Supply: Chevrolet


So, on a cross/fail rating, I solely obtained 6 out of 24 predictions right, or 25% right. In class, that may clearly be an F. As a zero.250 batting common for knowledgeable baseball participant, I might in all probability make a couple of million dollars per yr in wage.

On the numerical rating, the place I gave myself partial credit score when I obtained shut or a part of the prediction right, I tallied an eight.three or 34.6%. Nonetheless an F rating, however as a baseball participant with a zero.346 battering common, I’d be making $15–20 million per yr.

I’m too previous to turn out to be a ball participant, so I guess I’ll should work on sharpening my prediction pencil. However in all seriousness and in my very own protection, about half of my predictions I didn’t essentially anticipate to return true in 2018, however have been moderately predictions of issues that would occur in 2018, and should occur sooner or later within the subsequent few years.

So, I’ll shut with my favourite quote of the previous few years:

“In economics, things take longer to happen than you think they will,
and then they happen faster than you thought they could.” — Rudi Dornbusch, German economist



Tags: California, China, EV gross sales, Tesla, Tesla Mannequin three, US

Concerning the Writer

Loren McDonald writes concerning the elements driving adoption of electrical automobiles and the alternatives and challenges the transition to EVs presents corporations and entrepreneurs within the auto, utility, power, retail and different industries. His analysis and content material are revealed on CleanTechnica, his personal weblog/website,, and in his upcoming e-book “Gas Station Zero” concerning the large shifts and modifications in a number of industries pushed by the transition to battery electrical, autonomous and shared automobiles.

(perform(d, s, id) var js, fjs = d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0]; if (d.getElementById(id)) return; js = d.createElement(s); = id; js.src = “//”; fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js, fjs); (doc, ‘script’, ‘facebook-jssdk’));

About the author