OPINION: Unsold electric vehicles are piling up – people like the idea but are not buying them – by Gus Carlson (Globe and Mail – July 22, 2023)


Gus Carlson is a U.S.-based columnist for The Globe and Mail.

Some auto-industry observers are calling it a “field of dreams” moment, but if electric-vehicle makers can’t figure out how to bridge the gap between consumers’ curiosity in the products and their willingness to buy them, it may become a nightmare on Main Street.

The supply of unsold EVs on U.S. dealer lots has swelled 350 per cent so far this year, to more than 92,000 units in June. That’s about three months’ worth of inventory and nearly twice the industry average, according to a new report from Cox Automotive, the people behind the Kelley Blue Book auto-pricing guides.

With the average new EV costing US$64,000, that’s about US$6-billion in stock collecting dust – and all at a time when dealers are offering huge incentives for the summer sales season. Among the biggest losers – Genesis, the Hyundai luxury brand, sold only 18 of its high-end US$80,000 EV sedans in June, and some Audi and GMC EV models topped the 100-day inventory mark, Cox said.

By comparison, dealers have only 54 days’ worth of gas-powered vehicles on their lots, less than the usual 70-day threshold. The average cost of a gas-powered car is about US$30,000, less than half the price of the average EV.

For the rest of this column: https://www.theglobeandmail.com/business/commentary/article-unsold-electric-vehicles/